I had a walk round Rawcliffe Moss late morning and boy was it hot! It's a good job that there was a southeasterly breeze, otherwise it would have been even hotter.
I set off down the 'feeding hedge' and there were 3 or 4 Tree Sparrows in the hedge along with a couple of Goldfinches. I then headed along the '97 hedge' (see picture above) and had my first of 8 singing Whitethroats; the majority of these were in the plantation.
Skylarks were singing from the 'big' and 'top' fields and I had 3 singing birds in total, which was exactly the same number of singing Corn Buntings. Of the three singing Corn Buntings I only managed to see 2 of the females.
A number of butterflies were on the wing including Small & Green-veined Whites, Peacocks, Common Blues and Small Tortoiseshells. Talking of insects the best insect I had was a male Banded Demoiselle that I had in the plantation. These amazing damselflies are usually found alongside rivers but have started to colonise ponds and where I had this individual was very close to the pond in the plantation. I didn't manage to get a picture, so I have used an image (below) from the good people at Arkive.
On the top fields Lapwings had started to flock and I had 25 along with an Oystercatcher. The Oysrtercatcher was probably the male on guard whilst a female incubated on a nest in the tilled field.
Whilst walking through the plantation I had cracking views of Brown Hare feeding in one of the net rides. It wasn't aware that I was there and managed to come close enough for me to get the picture below.
The plantation was quiet other than singing Reed Bunting, Willow Warblers, Sedge Warbler and Whitethroats. In the recently re-seeded silage field to the north of the plantation 82 Rooks fed and they were a mixture of adults and recently fledged juvs. Two Mistle Thrushes were feeding in the same field and on my way back to my car I added to the warbler tally with a Blackcap singing from the 'L' wood.
Back at home I went through my moth trap and I had caught a couple of giants! These were Peppered Moth and Lime Hawkmoth. In addition to these two species I had a Brimstone Moth, 7 Heart and Darts, 3 Flame Shoulders, 3 Light Brown Apple Moths and a Shuttle-shaped Dart.
Feeding frenzy - *When we were walking along Whitburn beach in Sunderland this afternoon I noticed a dense flock of about 150 black-headed gulls on the tid...
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