31.7.16.

Sunday..Mainly Overcast, with occasional Sunny spells. 17ºC.

Baggeridge Country Park…

With reports of Six-belted Clearwings coming from Baggeridge Country Park, me and Ken decided to see if we could find any. Unfortunately even with the help of a Pheromone we could not locate any….

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This Coot juvenile got tangled up in some pond weed…

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Shaggy juvenile Canada Goose…

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We saw really good numbers of Little Grebe with young on most of the pools. I was trying to see what they were diving and catching to feed their young. I could only see that it was Sticklebacks, when I examined my photos at home. I tried to get a photo of the adult feeding it’s young. But this happened way to quickly. It amazed me how many times they were successful on each dive….

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Six-spot Burnet…

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Grey Heron on patrol…

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There was a Peregrine Falcon right at the top of the Baggeridge Brickworks Stack. Only record photos, with it being so high and distant…

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Potato Capsid…

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Unidentified Micro Moth…

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Unidentified Fungi…

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Good numbers of Comma’s around today, despite the overcast conditions…

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We saw 3-2nd generation Holly Blues…

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I did check out Highgate Common Wardens Office this morning, with only this Small Fan-footed Wave there…

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24.7.16.

Sunday…Cooler conditions today, with a pleasant feeling 15ºC this morning.

Not had much time just lately. But I did decided to put the moth trap out last night. this gave me 4 new moths and an unidentified moth.

Love the red tuft on this Dot Moth…

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1st Dun-bar I’ve seen this year…

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Lowest number of Heart and Darts in the trap last night…this was the only one…

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Poplar Grey…

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Wasn’t going to post the Polar Grey above, having posted quite a few of these lately. But I thought it would be good to show a comparison with this Knot Grass…

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Mother of Pearl…

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New Moth…Cherry Bark Tortrix (Enarmonia formosana)….

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A couple of different colour forms of Riband Waves…

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A very nice Pebble Hook-tip…

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Small Emerald…

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Unidentified Moth….

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New Moth…Ypsolopha scrabrella…

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The Moth on the front cover of my Micro Moths of Great Britain Book…Carcina quercana. Also the moth with the longest Antennae in proportion to it’s body, I have ever seen…

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Fan-foot. Love the large curved labial palps (mouth) on this moth…

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Willow Beauty. Doing Macro photography throws up some surprises at times. I did not see these Seeds/Pollen in the antennae, till I uploaded photos…

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New moth for my trap….Clouded Border…

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I think this is a Silver-ground Carpet, but being worn it’s hard to be sure…

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I always get confused with the Wave moths. The spots may or may not always be visible, like in this Small Fan-footed Wave…

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My best photo to date of a Twenty-plume Moth…

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Last of the new moths…Oegoconia quadripuncta…

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19.7.16.

Tuesday…Sunny, and a very hot feeling 30ºC.

With me going out for a meal tonight, not got much time to write or identify things.

HC Highlights Included 2 Southern Hawkers and a Common Darter male on the Island Pool. There was an Emperor Dragonfly on the Dog Pool. Not great photos, couldn’t hang about needed a drink. Also there was a Buzzard with only half a tail, must have moulted the others. 6 Lapwing flew over the Main Common….

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Did my 4th Moth trapping night! Wow! I was amazed at how many moths there was in the trap this morning. But with the warm and clear night, this is what I was hoping for. I still need more sample jars. Still identifying some of the Micros, but I would guess I have at least 6 new moths for my list. Here are just some of the catch….

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Oh and 10 Lacewing trapped….

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18.7.16.

Monday..Full sunshine, and even at 6:30am this morning it was 19ºC.

Only had a short visit this morning, I always find a nice sunny morning a good time to catch Purple Hairstreak down low feeding. I also had not seen one this year at HC. I did manage to see 2, but both were way up in the canopy of an Oak Tree. I could only manage to focus on this one….

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Even at this early hour, and with dew around, there was good numbers of Butterflies, like this Meadow Brown…

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While waiting to see if the Purple Hairstreaks would fly down, a Blue Tit and young Long-tailed Tit paid me a visit. Probably wondering why some nut was up so early, looking for Butterflies. Perhaps the Long-tailed Tit was wondering what I was looking at, and had a look itself….

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A lovely new Dedicated/Memorial bench has appeared. It’s in a lovely area of the Common. Like Howard, I have had many a happy time on the Common. Especially where this bench is. I photographed my 1st Emperor moth in this exact place.

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Perhaps Howard was looking down on me this morning, because no soon as I had finished photographing his bench, a Scarlet Tiger landed nearby. Hayley the new SWT Warden got the briefest of views has it flew off again. But I did manage this photo…

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Had a bit of luck back at the car. This Lesser Yellow Underwing flew in my boot…

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17.7.16.

Sunday…Sun with partial shade, and breezy early morning. Full sun from Noon. 24ºC.

Highgate Common and Whixall Moss trip…

Started the day by checking The Wardens office at HC. This proved successful with 2 new Micro Moths for my list. Top photo…Eucosma campoliliana…

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The 2nd new Micro Moth was this Codling Moth (Lydia pomonella)…

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Other moths were as follows….

Ghost Moth female…

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Coxcomb Prominent….

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Large Twin-spot Carpet…

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Common Emerald…

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Now to my 1st visit to Whixall Moss. 

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The view over the bog, looking towards the Welsh side of the bog…

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Cotton Grass, I found myself singing Cotton Eye Joe. Which I think got on Kens nerves…

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The main reason I went to Whixall Moss was to hopefully see and photograph Large Heath. I saw several, but only this one stayed still for me to get a photo. This also was down to luck. The luck came about, because Dawn and Paul had found one, and called us over to see it. Funny thing is we met Dawn and Paul only a week ago on Highgate Common. So I would like to thank Dawn and Paul for my 1st ever Large Heath sighting and photograph….

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Also all over Whixall Moss were loads of Black Darters. I managed loads of photos of these beauties. My favourite being the pair mating….

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The next sighting amazed me, anyone who has followed me on the Highgate Common FB page and Website, know how long I have waited to see a Bog Bush Cricket, without any success. At Whixall Moss they are everywhere round the bogs. So this was a real pleasure. Also it will help me in looking for them on HC now. Knowing what to look for and how they move…

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Emerald Damselfly….

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When I was growing up I owned a few Venus Fly Traps and Sundews. It was great to see Sundews growing in there natural habitat….

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Another highlight was finding a new moth for my list. This one is a Bog Specialist. It’s called a Manchester Treble-bar….

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I love the colours of this Dutch Rush (Equisetum hyemate)….

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Four-spotted Chaser….

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We went looking for the White-faced Darter, but this one on the sign was the only one we saw….

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All the while we were looking for the White-faced Darter, a Curlew constantly flew and called above us….

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The only other bird I managed to photograph was this distant male Stonechat…

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Yet another sign, with something we didn’t see. But I would guess Snipe number in the hundreds here…

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On the way back to the car, we had a bonus highlight. I saw what I thought was a Hornet fly fast into the grass. Turns out it was this Red-breasted Carrion Beetle. This is a new species of beetle to me. It was large and a very impressive creature…

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Great Day! With Great Wildlife and Great People!!!

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16.7.16.

Saturday..Mainly overcast…17ºC.

I always think with the overcast conditions, the wildlife seems quieter. But today proved to be a good day..

At the Wardens Office there was two moths. a Dwarf-cream Wave…

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Plus the 1st Yellow-tail of the year…

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Also on the Wardens Wall was this Brown Chafer…

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I kept my eye open on the Oaks today, trying to find a Purple Hairstreak, but still did not see any. While looking, I did find this really small Argyresthia goedartella…

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Musk-Mallow…

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This is a new moth for my list. It’s called a Northern Spinach…

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The Gatekeeper continue to grow in numbers….

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This is an Ichneumons Wasp…Pimpla rufipes. I think it may have been laying eggs in the Gorse….

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Brown Plume Moth….

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I saw and photographed my 1st Essex Skippers this summer…

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This was really nice to see. Me and Ken have both been saying..there seemed less Tree Pipits at HC this year. Last year I saw at least 4 families. So today it was good to find 2 Adults with young. So like the bottom Tree Pipit things maybe looking up…

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A pinkish looking Shaded Broad-bar…

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Small White…

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Small Heath….

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Nursery Web Spider…

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Talking of Spiders, This Cricket Bat Spider was only the 4th record for Staffordshire. The rest being on Kinver Edge….

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I put my moth trap out for the 3rd time Thursday night. It gave me a new moth, a Small Emerald (Top Photo)….

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14.7.16.

Thursday…Mainly sunny morning, with occasional cloud cover…17ºC

Me and Ken had a trip over Wyre Forest this morning. Our goal was to see and photograph Silver-washed and Dark Green Fritillary. Unlike the Little Bittern the other day. We achieved this quite easily.

Silver-washed Fritillary…

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Dark Green Fritillary..Check out the patterns on the undersides of the Silver-washed (above) and this Dark Green Fritillary…

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Speckled Wood….

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Actually nice to get a photo of a female Southern Hawker this summer…

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Blackcap…

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Female Minotaur Beetle….

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I went to HC yesterday, only to have my walk cut short, by a heavy downpour. I tried to wait it out but it never stopped….That is till I got home and the sun came out again….Very Very Annoying. I did take one photo of a Corncockle flower on Birch Coppice Car Park. The Wild Flowers the Wardens and Volunteers planted look really great now….

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