1-30 June 2010 blog and sightings

28-30 June 2010 Flew to Madeira during the afternoon and was on a boat and sailing out to sea by the evening. A repeat of last years trip for seabirds and endemics, full trip report soon.

Bulwer’s at sea

28 June 2010 Out at WWT by 0600 where the insects were flying again this early in the morning. A flock of 14 Black-tailed Godwit and 48 Redshank were on the South Lake, there were 80 of the latter yesterday. Another post breeding flock of 120 Lapwing were gathered on the Top New Piece. Last night we had a Buff Ermine Moth in the bathroom with a Dark Arches the night before.

27 June 2010 The heatwave continues, WWT was becoming ever quieter as the afternoon approached, an exodus from midday with World Cup interest kicking in. The car park was very quiet by 1500 but was it worth it? A splendid day for insects at WWT, 2 Painted Ladies and 15 dragonfly and damselfly species noted with Hairy Dragonfly still on the wing. Still more birds arriving on site but nothing out of the ordinary.

26 June 2010 An afternoon in the Forest of Dean again with the family, we found a Silver-washed Fritillary, four Golden-ringed Dragonflies and noted plenty of Siskin about the Cannop Valley.

25 June 2010 A few hours in the Forest of Dean to have a break from the PC was well worth it, lots of dragonflies including my first Downy Emerald and Emerald Damselflies of the year.

22-24 June 2010 The scorching summer weather is so good for insect watching, I have loved seeing so many dragonflies and butterflies on the wing. On the 23rd a Breeding wader Survey produce 6 pairs of Redshank with young in the 100 Acre, a Snipe, two broods of Yellow Wagtail, 4 Scarce Chasers in new areas and lots of drags and damsels, at least 3000 Blue-tailed Damselfly noted. On 24th I was involved in a team effort at WWT to ring the Black-headed Gulls on the South Lake. 34 were marked many with darvics.

21 June 2010 Midsummers day at WWT, the Marsh Harrier showed well on my evening safari and appears to be moulting the crown rapidly. It was around the 100 Acre again along with 4 Scarce Chasers. A very warm evening. I had a Marbled White in the Green Lane.

Marsh Harrier, WWT

20 June 2010 A Scarce Chaser in the 100 Acre again.

15-19 June 2010 Away on an Anser trip to Northumberland for four nights and Upper Teesdale on the way home. A full trip report available soon but a few images for now.

The Straw’s Bridge, Derbyshire Great Reed Warbler performed very well.

As eventually did the Saltholme RSPB Broad-billed Sandpiper.

A couple of good birds to break up the journey but our main point of focus was of course seabirds.

13 June 2010 Some birds increasing as they return to the WWT reserve eg Teal and Curlew but still fairly quiet. A Grasshopper Warbler was in full song at Middle Point. The Marsh Harrier  I saw on the 10th was back over the 100 Acre/50 Acre/Bull Ground this afternoon. A very interesting bird. My first WWT reserve male Scarce Chaser of the year was also in the 100 Acre.

Marsh Harrier probably a first summer male, WWT 100 Acre. Taken from the viewing platform with Panasonic Lumix DMC FS7 and Swarovski HD 65, x20-60 scope MJM.

The greyish feathering moulting through on the upperwing and rump indicates a male, it lacks much in the way of a cream crown only flecks of it showing. It does give the appearance of having a white rump which is misleading. We just do not see enough of these in Glos to become experts on ageing, this of course may change with potential colonisation of our county.



11-12 June 2010 No birding.

10 June 2010 Whilst mowing a few parts of the Bull Ground field/marsh at WWT I saw a bird move near to the tractor, I got out thinking it is very late for a Jack Snipe when a Quail popped up and flew across the field calling. I also noted a brood of Shoveler with 9 in tow, two broods of Yellow Wagtail, two broods of Skylark and a Marsh Harrier flew through aftre quartering the fields, see 13 June for pics. A Green Sandpiper on the Tack Piece was the first returning bird of the autumn passage for me.

A Quail….honest.

Juvenile Yellow Wag

Female Shoveler and ducklings


9 June 2010 Was slightly gutted about missing a WWT reserve first….a male Velvet Scoter on the estuary from 0550-0620. A Spoonbill was reported as well at 1000 and a Cattle Egret during the middle of the day. I saw this bird in flight at the BNP from the Holden Tower with Gordon Youdale at c1415 but it was heading toward the canal from the cattle herd. We have not seen it since but it has many herds to choose from locally, a birder with time could probably locate it in a thorough search of the area.

8 June 2010 A Greenshank, 5 Grey Plover and small flocks of Dunlin and Ringed Plover were notable for June. LPA saw a Little Stint and 2 Whimbrel also.

6-7 June 2010 No birding.

5 June 2010 A stroll through Nagshead RSPB was a nice way to while away a couple of hours. Apart from spending time with  my wife, a few pairs of Pied Flycatchers feeding young, singing Wood Warbler, 2 Broad bodied Chasers and an Emperor emerging from the pond were the highlights. Nearby we watched Small Pearl bordered Fritillaries, a Dingy Skipper and Four spot and Broad Bodied Chasers at the Parkend/New Fancy View junction.

SPBFrit in the FOD.


4 June 2010 I got married to my partner who is now Mrs Harriet McGill. A wonderful day for both of us and so great to see so many family in friends together at once! An evening stroll from our hotel in Aylburton, Glos up a country lane was a fine reminder of what English summer evenings can be like. Lots of bats, screaming Swifts c30 and nectar feeding moths everywhere, very nice.

3 June 2010 Held off from birding today as I was so busy but had to fold late afternoon to dash to Blorenge in Wales for a Marmora’s Warbler, all very last minute and on a tight time shedule but bagged this fine little bird nonetheless. It is still present at the time of writing (13th June). What was as impressive was the high concentration of territorial Whinchats, calling Red Grouse, Stonechats, lots of passerines, Ravens and more. A good place allround.

Club-tailed Dragonfly Gomphus vulgatissimus

Duke of Burgundy


Forester Moth

2 June 2010 A visit to the Mythe at Tewkesbury where JJS and I logged an Emperor, 50 Red-eyed Damselflies, 5 White-legged, Blue-tailed, Common Blue, 50+ Banded Demoiselle damselflies, 3 Club-tailed Dragonfly, 2 Scarce Chasers (males), and three Black-tailed Skimmers. We also had a Kingfisher here and Curlew calling. An hour spent at the Prestbury Butterfly Reserve, Cleeve Hill gave us 2 Duke of Burgundy butterflies, a Forester Moth three Tree Pipits and 4 Yellowhammer.

1 June 2010 No wildlife watching today.

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