Archive for July, 2007

31st July 2007, Tuesday

Rottingdean Sea-lavender

despite its name this is a native of Sicily, but has become established at Rottingdean… and recently at Rye Harbour, just seaward of the red roofed hut near the river mouth. Although battered by the recent hailstorm, it is in full flower now and grows amongst the Sea Heath which is also flowering well.
Rottingdean Sea-lavender
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31st July 2007, Tuesday

Castle Water

Highlights today, 3 Bearded Tit and Hobby at the viewpoint. On the main pit, 6 Common Sandpiper, 3 Green Sandpiper and 4 Mediterranean Gull, Moorhen chicks (pictured) gave good views infront of the hide. 400+ Lapwing and 2 Greenshank were present on the new excavations.

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31st July 2007, Tuesday

Rye Harbour Moths

Quite a warm morning today and a few more species of moth in the Lime Kiln moth trap (around 45 – still a bit below par for this time of year). The main rarity interest was among the micros, with small numbers of Ethmia bipunctella, Synaphe punctalis and Dolicharthria punctalis, as well as a couple Pediasia aridella, a new species for the year, while the only notable macros were Crescent Striped and Pigmy Footman. Other new faces included Gold Spot (below), Sallow Kitten and Southern Wainscot
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Gold Spot

31st July 2007, Tuesday

Beach Reserve

Highlights this morning, 32 Sanderling and 71 Curlew were feeding along the shore. Along the shingle ridges and Harbour Farm 90+ Yellow Wagtail, 40 Linnet and 45 Meadow Pipit. 17 Common Sandpiper and 15 Dunlin (pictured) were spread between Ternery Pool and the new pools on Harbour Farm, 2 Whimbrel were on Wader Pool.

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30th July 2007, Monday

Hooray for Horseflies!

Highlight on the weekly butterfly/dragonfly count today was a creature belonging to a less well appreciated group of insects. It was a female Saltmarsh Horsefly (Atylotus latistriatus, below), a rare species which as the name suggests is associated with saltmarsh in Britain. Despite its rather fearsome aspect, this species rarely bites humans (though other warm-blooded creatures are less fortunate) and in fact is more likely to be found feeding on flowers. Among the dragonflies/butterflies the most interesting records included a couple of Brown Argus butterflies, Brown Hawker and Small Red-eyed Damselfly (bottom) behind Bourne’s.
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Saltmarsh Horsefly
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30th July 2007, Monday

News from RSPB Dungeness

A cattle egret was found at Denge marsh mid-afternoon. It flew off towards Boulderwall Farm and appeared to cross the road but has not yet been relocated.  Also on the reserve today: two garganey (from Firth hide), lesser whitethroat and willow warbler.  There has been an increase in the number of wader sightings over the past week with common, green and wood sandpipers all present in small numers plus greenshank, whimbrel and curlew.  The 28th saw over 1000 sand martins on the move along with a few house martins.

30th July 2007, Monday

Rye Harbour

Bird highlights over the past few days, 14 Common Sandpiper, 7 Whimbrel, 5 Greenshank, 5 Green Sandpiper, Arctic Skua and a Peregrine on the Beach Reserve. At Castle Water, 6 Common Sandpiper, 4 Green Sandpiper, 2 Black-tailed Godwit, 8 Snipe, Kingfisher and Hobby. 73 Redshank (pictured) were found roosting on the Bittern Excavation.

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30th July 2007, Monday

Migrant Hawker

Migrant Hawkers are now emerging in the small pools on Harbour Farm, this late summer dragonfly can be found in good numbers on the Reserve, the resident population is also boosted with migrants from the continent. The picture below shows a freshly emerged male with exuvia.

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30th July 2007, Monday

Small Red-eyed Damselfly

The colony found last year (see post 31st july 2006) on Castle Farm was checked on Saturday, 118 were found including 26 ovipositing females in tandem with males, a pair is pictured below.

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29th July 2007, Sunday

Dungeness Bird Observatory

There was a steady movement of Sandwich Terns and Common Terns during the morning along with five Little Terns and three Arctic Skuas. A visit to the Patch for the evening low tide produced ten juvenile Yellow-legged Gulls (along with the usual additional two adults at the fishing boats), two juvenile Mediterranean Gulls and a first-summer Arctic Tern. There was also a trickle of waders during the day which included four Dunlin, four Sanderling, two Whimbrel and 20 Turnstones. Birds continued to move through overhead with 300 Swifts, 60 Sand Martins and three Yellow Wagtails and 90 Pied Wagtails went to roost in the power station. near the Observatory but there was little evidence of any grounded migrants.  David Walker from DBO website