Monday, 30 May 2016

Military Orchids - Brecks ~ 30 May

Went to see Military Orchids flowering at a well-known site in the Suffolk Brecks which holds over 95% of the UK population of this extremely rare species in Britain. This was my first time seeing this species; they were slightly larger than I had expected and most stunning, despite the pretty miserable weather.

Military Orchid ~ Orchis militaris

Military Orchid ~ Orchis militaris

Thursday, 26 May 2016

Goring & Hartslock ~ 26 May

A trip to the well-known concrete bank here where the railway crosses the River Thames south of Goring.

Arriving at around 0915, there was a Common Clubtail halfway through emerging on the bank - very lucky indeed. A series of photos of the emergence is shown below.

Common Clubtail ~ Gomphus vulgatissimus

Common Clubtail ~ Gomphus vulgatissimus

Common Clubtail ~ Gomphus vulgatissimus

Common Clubtail ~ Gomphus vulgatissimus

Walking along the Thames to the East, the warm weather encouraged good numbers of Banded Demoiselles, and a female Peregrine circled overhead. Arriving at Hartlock at around 11:30am, there were large numbers of Monkey x Lady Orchid in bloom along with considerably smaller number of Monkey Orchid. No Lady Orchid were present.

Monkey x Lady Orchid ~ Orchis x angusticruris
Monkey Orchid ~ Orchis Simia

Monkey Orchid ~ Orchis Simia
Across the down Dingy Skippers were out in good numbers, along with a few Green Hairstreak and a lone but surprisingly fresh Grizzled Skipper. A good number of Nomada goodeniana were around and a couple of chalkland specialists including Osmia bicolor and Hoplitis claviventris. 

Hoplitis claviventris

Grizzled Skipper ~ Pyrgus malvae

Thursday, 19 May 2016

UEA ~ 19 May

An afternoon walk along the section of river running through UEA-land from the Watersoldier pond to the playing fields bridge. Odonata counts were:

1 Red-eyed Damselfly (ten.)
~80 Banded Demoiselle (inc. some emerging)
5 Blue-tailed Damselfly
45 Azure Damselfly
17 Common Blue
~50 Large Reds
1 t.male Black-tailed Skimmer
1 Hairy Dragonfly

Eristalis horticola

Saturday, 14 May 2016

UEA ~ 14 May

A very quick walk around patch this afternoon was rewarded with excellent views of a male Cuckoo feeding alongside the river to the west of the broad. A second male was singing from within the rabbit enclosure.

Numbers of Nomad bees continue to build in the small clearing to the west of the broad, along with good numbers of Andrena haemorrhoa (females identifiable by the brick red pile on the top of the thorax, orange hairs to the tip of the abdomen and yellow hind tibia) nesting in the bare patches of soil.

Andrena haemorrhoa