9 Jun 16

The Flash: 07:00 – 07:20

Sunrise: 04:45 BST
12°C > 15°C Low cloud soon dispersed to leave hazy sun. Light / moderate E wind. Moderate visibility at best and hazy again

 (58th visit of the year)

- all drake Mallard this morning: perhaps the duck and her duckling tucked away somewhere
- a different new brood of Coot
- still cloudy when I was here and gave me perhaps my largest-ever count of Swifts here
- 1 Grey Wagtail was, surprisingly, my first of the year here: post-breeding dispersal?

Birds noted flying over
- 2 Feral Pigeons

Hirundines etc. seen here today
- >40 Swifts
- 8 House Martins

Warblers seen / heard around the water: numbers in brackets are singing birds
- 3 (3) Blackcaps

The counts from the water
- 2 + 6 Mute Swans
- 13 Greylag Geese
- 78 Canada Geese
- 1 all white feral-goose
- 2 (1♂) Tufted Duck
- 12 (12?) Mallard
- 2 Great Crested Grebes again
- 1 Moorhen again
- 19 + 4 (1 brood) Coots

Here is the Grey Wagtail seen this morning – and my first of the year here. In the shade at 07:00 this flighty bird is not exactly sharp but we can see it is a male because the throat is black and not dark grey and the undertail is a bright yellow. We also see that the black throat is a bit blotchy so the bird has finished breeding and started its annual moult.

(Ed Wilson)


Priorslee Lake: 07:25 – 09:55

(93rd visit of the year)

- the presumed same 1st year Black-headed Gull again present throughout
- when I first did a scan of the lake I was certain there were only 3 (2?) Tufted Duck: later there were certainly 4 (2?): but later still one pair flew out. So how many were there? 4 or 5?
- an agitated Garden Warbler seen with at least one presumed juvenile calling from nearby; and then some brief song – this back in the location of the original sighting of this species this year and nowhere near the song post of the last week or so. That bird not heard this morning
- the wide-ranging Common Whitethroat was seen back singing again, presumably because the first brood has now fledged – at least one juvenile seen this morning
- my first Painted Lady butterfly of the year on the dam
- a Pale Oak Beauty moth on one of the lamps
- at least 6 Silver-ground Carpet moths
- Common Blue and Blue-tailed Damselflies again

Counts of birds flying over the lake (in addition to those on / around lake)
Somewhat affected by the hazy conditions
- 4 Lesser Black-backed Gulls
- 7 Jackdaws
- 24 Rooks

Hirundines etc. approximate maxima
- 7 Swifts
- 5 Barn Swallows
- 4 House Martins

Warblers seen / heard around the lake: numbers in brackets are singing birds
- 11 (10) Chiffchaffs again
- 12 (9) Blackcaps
- 3 (1) Garden Warbler
- 4 (2) Common Whitethroats
- 7 (6) Reed Warblers

The counts from the lake area
- 2 + 2 Mute Swans
- 15 (12?) + 2 duckling Mallard
- 4 (2?) Tufted Duck (see notes)
- 5 Great Crested Grebes
- no Moorhens
- 32 + 3 juveniles (2 broods) Coots
- 1 Black-headed Gull

Here are the two Mallard ducklings now well-grown and hard to tell as juveniles – but look at the length of the wings. Note too that the right-hand bird shows a pale green bill indicating it is a male, the other with some orange at the side of a brown bill is a female. So brother and sister.

Oh no! Not another Common Whitethroat picture! Yep – and as long as they give views like this I will take their picture. This is a juvenile – the general scruffiness; the extensive gape and the rather dull iris confirm.

Here is my first Painted Lady butterfly of the year warming itself in the sun and on the stones on the dam.

Later what was probably the same specimen fed on the Valerian (Valeriana officinalis) on the dam. Note the tongue.
In all its glory.

This looks like a Pale Oak Beauty moth. It was at a dreadful angle on the lamp and surrounded by overhanging vegetation and despite getting comprehensively ‘nettled’ I was unable to get a better shot. The feathered antenna seem to clinch the ID as this species rather than the more common Engrailed moth.

Another “what’s in the spider webs this morning”: here a crane fly sp., and probably Ctenophora atrata.

(Ed Wilson)


Woodhouse Lane: [08:10 – 08:50]

Back around the fields and lane the first time for nearly two weeks.

- new flowers since I was last in the area included Common Comfrey (Symphytum officinale), Common Poppy (Papaver rhoeas) and Foxglove (Digitalis purpurea)
- my first Common Marble (Celypha lacunana) and Yellow-barred Longhorn (Nemophora degeerella) moths of the year

Some numbers (numbers in brackets are singing birds)
- 4 (4) Sky Larks
- 1 (1) Goldcrest
- 4 (2) Chiffchaffs
- 2 (2) Blackcaps
- 2 (2) Garden Warblers
- 4 (3) Common Whitethroats
- 5 (5) Song Thrushes
- no Linnets
- 1 (0) Bullfinch
- 3 (2) Yellowhammers

“You will wonder where the yellow went when you leave your rape to ripen and bent” [with apologies to Pepsodent – for those of you with long memories]. Just a few remnant yellow flowers, but mainly the seed-cases being left to swell and ripen to produce the oil.

Common Poppy (Papaver rhoeas) was the only one of the new flowers that was sufficiently out of the wind that I could get a crisp shot.

Here is the moth Celypha lacunana (aka Common Marble) – a common micro moth, but my first this year.

A Greenbottle, probably Lucilia caesar though there are less common alternatives possible.

A micro moth that is easy to identify – Nemophora degeerella (Yellow-barred Longhorn). Exactly the purpose of those super-long antenna is seems to be unknown.

(Ed Wilson)

On this day in ...........
Priorslee Lake

Today's Sightings Here

Local Area

Today's Sightings Here

Priorslee Lake
7 Reed Warblers
Willow Warbler
(Ed Wilson)

Priorslee Lake
3 Great Crested Grebe
Ruddy Duck
Great Spotted Woodpecker
House Martin
Reed Warbler
Sedge Warbler
Garden Warbler
Willow Warbler
Reed Bunting
(Martin Adlam)

Priorslee Lake
4 Great Crested Grebes
1 Heron
2 Cormorants
2 Tufted Ducks
1 Kestrel
3 Stock Dove
3 Swift
4 Swallow
11 House Martin
6 Reed Warblers
1 Lesser Whitethroat
9 Blackcap
5 Chiffchaff
7 Greenfinch
3 Bullfinch
6 Reed Bunting
(Ed Wilson)