Saturday, August 31, 2019

πŸ“– August!

⛅️☀️☁️ 🌧 ⛈πŸ’¨18/33C August 2019 ~ August for me is my least favourite month for birding, I travel little, with the odd rare excursion and for the most part, I like to spend it out on the canal enjoying the weather. That is of course if we have the weather and with the exception of the last Bank Holiday weekend, it's been dreadful. Despite all else, I can't recall an August thats been so persistently windy!

This amazing Elephant Hawk Moth caterpillar has to be for me the main highlight of my recent visits to Brandon Marsh.
With the weather in mind and mostly being confined to the marina, I've made several visits to Brandon Marsh over the period to prevent boredom from setting in. I did work with the Conservation Team on Thursday brush cutting the Islands and banks around East Marsh which was very enjoyable. However, my other visits were spent in the early part of the day dodging the kids and some of the ridiculous activities that the trust has the audacity to call educational. Anyway, I'll just concentrate on the nature aspect of my visits and not politics.

Green Sandpiper
I spend little time in the hides during my summer visits, preferring to explore the woods and meadows. That said an influx of Green Sandpipers has been one of the highlights recently, mainly on Teal pool where eight were reported on the 28th, I personally only managed five, which is likely my highest count here for a considerable time.

Young Blackcaps are already taking advantage of the Elderberries.
There's plenty of activity in the woods with lots of young birds frantically feeding up and the first autumn 'tit flocks' are forming up, mainly made up of Long-tailed Tits but carrying the odd Chiffchaff, Goldcrest and Willow Warbler. Blackcaps are still the most abundant warbler and in some cases are still singing, not quite the full persona but more like mumbling to themselves as they feed, fascinating to listen too.

Juvenile Common Buzzard from the Ted Jury Hide
Talking of young birds I managed to photograph the above juvenile Buzzard during a brief visit to the Ted Jury Hide also on the 28th. The bird stayed for some time constantly mewing to what I assume was the parent circling high above.

Other Highlights from my Visits included...

Migrant Hawker ~ These late summer Dragonflies are now in good numbers

This Emerald Damselfly is a first for me at Brandon!
Silver Y Moth

Still, small numbers of Painted Lady to be found in this exceptional year for the species.