August began as July ended on an unsettled note with low pressure firmly in control producing torrential and sometimes prolonged downpours. However, there has been the odd respite with long sunny intervals giving me the opportunity for a few coastal walks.
|Another juvenile Stonechat along the coastal paths.|
One species, in particular, that appears to be having a successful year is the Stonechat. I've encountered quite a few over the past few weeks ramblings, mostly in family groups and often still being attended to by the parents.
|Grayling at rest within the sand dunes ~ This one appears to have a tick issue!|
When the sun does shine there are still plenty of Butterflies on the wing and despite seeing them on a few brief occasions recently I finally managed a snapshot of a Grayling at rest. A predominantly coastal species the cryptic colouring provides the Grayling with excellent camouflage, making it difficult to see when on bare ground. The wings are kept closed when not in flight and the forewings are usually tucked behind the hind wings, concealing the eyespots and making the butterfly appear smaller than what they are.
|Dark Green Fritillary|
Another species I regularly encounter at most sites I visit is the Dark Green Fritillary and there were a good few to be found during my walks last week.
|Male Red-backed Shrike along the golf course at Girdleness.|
|Catch me if you can!|
On Saturday 7th a Red-backed Shrike was located at Tory Battery, Girdleness early morning but with plans in place visiting Daaza's old school in Aberdeen followed by lunch, I resisted the urge to travel straight over. Fortunately, when we did eventually get across to the harbour late afternoon we found the bird with little effort in gorse along the golf course fairway. Although flighty we managed a few record shots before heading home. If it stays longer I may try for some better images but it's a nice addition to my new Scottish Birding List.
|Red-throated Diver from a short watch Collieston|
From a seawatching perspective, there have been some lucrative southeasterlies during the middle part of the week with a few notables being reported locally. These have included Sooty Shearwater and Long-tailed Skua but personally, I've only managed two Great Skua and a single Manx Shearwater during my brief watches but I'm hopeful of spending a little more time in the coming week.
A Few More Images of the Week...
|Oak Eggar Caterpillar|
|Juvenile Eider Duck|
|Juvenile Little Tern|
|Arctic Tern at rest|
|Mossy Rose Gall Wasp ~ 'Robin's Pincushion'|