essex buzzard

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millerd
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Re: essex buzzard

Postby millerd » Thu Sep 21, 2017 8:48 pm

A nice Kentish selection, Essex. You visited the same spots that I did at the start of the same week - I recognise those butterflies! :) That Clouded Yellow wasn't stopping for anyone... :wink:

Dave

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David M
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Re: essex buzzard

Postby David M » Thu Sep 21, 2017 9:50 pm

You only spotted one Brown Hairstreak, Mark, but she looks a beauty...as does that female Adonis.

essexbuzzard
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Re: essex buzzard

Postby essexbuzzard » Fri Sep 22, 2017 10:59 pm

Thanks Guys. I've seen some lovely Adonis this year, both male and female. But I was delighted to find that Brown Hairstreak. Clouded Yellows stop for no-one! But as the autumn progresses, and hopefully a few new ones emerge, they should slow down a little!

Welcome to the autumn equinox. In theory, this means there was 12 hours of daylight today the world over. But this is not quite true, because the light is slightly bent as it enters the Earths atmosphere, adding about six minutes 'fake' daylight each day. The twelve hours equal day is Sunday.

There is already plenty of autumn colour about, perhaps a month earlier than last year. Maybe this is because of the warm early to high summer, and a cold September. It was a lovely sunny day today however-the best since August.
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Maximus
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Re: essex buzzard

Postby Maximus » Fri Sep 22, 2017 11:50 pm

I'm glad you saw your Brown Hairstreak too, Mark.

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Re: essex buzzard

Postby Wurzel » Sat Sep 23, 2017 9:43 pm

Great Adonis from the previous post Essex :D Is it just me or are the 'two pupil-ed' Meadow Browns becoming more common?

Have a goodun

Wurzel

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Re: essex buzzard

Postby essexbuzzard » Wed Sep 27, 2017 5:57 pm

They do seem to be, don't they Wurzel? Rather like blue female Common Blues.

Dungerness, 6 September. A trip to see the Small Coppers, as well as hopefully a Clouded Yellow or two. Plenty of Coppers were indeed seen, around 40, but surprisingly they were outnumbered by Small Heaths, around 50- a good number in the short time the weather was suitable. And we did find a couple of Clouded Yellows, by the wall around the power station.
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Several Painted Ladies were about-considering I saw my first PL way back in March, I'm surprised there haven't been more around this year. I was pleased to see several Peacock, my first since early August. Common Blues were in good numbers,and a few fresh Brown Argus, perhaps third brood. Meadow Brown, Large White, Small White and Red Admiral complete the picture. It was much cloudier than forecast,so I think this was a pretty good showing.
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essexbuzzard
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Re: essex buzzard

Postby essexbuzzard » Wed Sep 27, 2017 8:50 pm

Forgot the Painted Lady picture from Dungerness!
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Re: essex buzzard

Postby essexbuzzard » Wed Sep 27, 2017 9:25 pm

I've struggled this September to find any reasonable breaks in the weather. All too often it's been cloudy and cold, but I did manage a short visit to Bedfords Park a couple of weeks back. All three whites were seen. A male Large White was feeding on a large clump of devils-bit scabious, oblivious to a female feeding nearby. Suddenly he spotted her, and they were off, spiralling upwards, until she landed high on a hawthorn. He landed alongside where,after a bit of fidgeting, they mated, though too high up for a picture.

This site is excellent for Small Coppers, being warm and south-facing. They showed well, in the short time the weather was suitable, including some nice, fresh third brood ones. Bedfords is on the Essex border with London, with grand views over the city skyline.
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David M
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Re: essex buzzard

Postby David M » Wed Sep 27, 2017 9:30 pm

essexbuzzard wrote:I've struggled this September to find any reasonable breaks in the weather.


Tell me about it! This is the worst September for several years and it has obliterated any chances of finding good numbers or decent ranges of species in October, unless we have an exceptionally fast turnaround in the weather.

I think you have instinctively called things correctly in this quote:

There is already plenty of autumn colour about, perhaps a month earlier than last year. Maybe this is because of the warm early to high summer, and a cold September. It was a lovely sunny day today however-the best since August.


You may be right there, Mark. I certainly noticed many of the trees have taken on their autumn colours this weekend whereas last year even at Hallowe’en many of them were still in full leaf, albeit shades of yellow, red and brown rather than green. The flowers seem to have gone over quicker too, although that may be down to the frequent stormy weather my area has seen lately.

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Re: essex buzzard

Postby essexbuzzard » Wed Sep 27, 2017 9:41 pm

This is also a really good site for Commas, with lots of sheltered, south-facing blackberry bushes. They were here in good numbers, and it was a delight to see so many. Also expected were the Speckled Woods, but a Small Tortoiseshell was a pleasant surprise, even more so when it sat for picture-taking!
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essexbuzzard
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Re: essex buzzard

Postby essexbuzzard » Wed Sep 27, 2017 9:45 pm

I echo your sentiment, Dave. The last few days the temperature has gone back up to average, but it's been so cloudy! Hope I'm wrong, but I fear it's going to a long winter...

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Re: essex buzzard

Postby essexbuzzard » Wed Sep 27, 2017 10:16 pm

All through September I had been waiting for a decent break in the weather, for one last long-distance trip out. After several 'shall we or not' days, I we finally found a day when the forecast was good, and set out for Osmington, in Dorset. After heavy rain the day before, and no doubt other days recently, it was a very muddy path up to White Horse hill. But there was a bit of early sun, and we soon spotted the first Speckled Wood, a bit tatty, but very welcome after a long drive. Several more were seen later.
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Once on the Hill, I was really hoping for some Adonis Blues, if all the wet weather had not finished them off. I soon found several, but they were very worn. Then Esther shouted me over, the male she found was much better. Pictures were taken, then I continued the search. A little while after, I found another good male.
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While searching for my Blues, I also spotted this lovely Small Copper, with a great set of blue badges, a great find.
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essexbuzzard
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Re: essex buzzard

Postby essexbuzzard » Wed Sep 27, 2017 10:37 pm

A few nice female Adonis were found at Osmington, including this cracker, with her lovely dusting of blue scales.
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A couple each of Comma and Red Admiral were feeding on the sheltered blackberries, but I was surprised,and delighted, to find this lovely Peacock, they are long gone into hibernation in my neck of the woods.
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By lunchtime it was unexpectedly clouding over once again, so we headed to Swanage for lunch, hoping things would improve. They did, but not until evening, so we walked from Swanage to Old Harry Rocks, enjoying a little late sunshine, and the fantastic views from up there.
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So, although the weather wasn't quite as good as forecast, we had, at last, had a good day. :)

trevor
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Re: essex buzzard

Postby trevor » Thu Sep 28, 2017 7:29 am

That certainly is a stunning female Adonis Blue, Mark.
There is something fascinating about ' blue ' female Common/Adonis.
I was hoping that you would have a third brood Wall report for us.

Trevor.

essexbuzzard
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Re: essex buzzard

Postby essexbuzzard » Thu Sep 28, 2017 7:46 pm

Maybe I have...

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David M
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Re: essex buzzard

Postby David M » Thu Sep 28, 2017 8:04 pm

That's one hell of a caeruleopunctata, Mark, and the female Adonis in your next post is almost as striking! You've seen some wonderful late season action this year in what has been a predominantly dreary period for most of us.

millerd
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Re: essex buzzard

Postby millerd » Thu Sep 28, 2017 9:20 pm

A lovely Small Copper and the female Adonis is a smashing insect. Worth that long trek down... :)

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Wurzel
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Re: essex buzzard

Postby Wurzel » Thu Sep 28, 2017 9:32 pm

I agree with David Essex, that is one hell of a Blue Badger - I don't think I've seen one that well 'badged' before! :D :mrgreen:

Have a goodun

Wurzel

essexbuzzard
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Re: essex buzzard

Postby essexbuzzard » Fri Sep 29, 2017 8:47 pm

Thanks everyone. Despite all the recent cloud and rain, Osmington Hill still managed to come up with the goods! And I agree, that Small Copper must be one of the best I have seen!

Convey Island now probably has the strongest colony of Walls in Essex, though they can also be seen nearby at Benfleet Downs and Hadleigh Castle CP. Last Sunday, the sun at last came out, so I arrived at the Canvey Wick nature reserve, an old industrial site, earlier to catch the Walls warming up. They would probably be hyperactive later!

I soon found my first Wall, a rather worn male. But much better was to come, for I soon found a few more males, some fresh, some less so. Two males met, and went spiralling upwards into the sky,spinning for maybe a minute or two before separating, only to meet again and repeate the action. Several others were feeding on ragwort, or whatever flowers were available.
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After enjoying these excellent males, my attention turned to finding the more elusive females. This wasn't too difficult, as I found a larger patch of ragwort which had a nice one feeding on it, wings spread wide. A search elsewhere turned up a few more, and some male Walls. As the day warmed up, they became more and more flighty, reminding me of the benefits of arriving early at Wall sites. I also was able to show someone a Wall, a female, who had never seen one, as well as a Clouded Yellow, Brown Argus and Common Blues. A good mornings work!
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millerd
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Re: essex buzzard

Postby millerd » Fri Sep 29, 2017 9:10 pm

Some very nice Walls there, Essex, especially the females. It also shows that Sussex doesn't have a monopoly on the third brood! :)

Dave


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