Thursday, 12 July 2018

Birthday outing to Maple Lodge and Mum's garden

Yesterday (11th July) was my birthday and I decided after a birthday breakfast with my lovely Mum to pop down to my favourite nature reserve - Maple Lodge
A friend of mine was going to join me later for his first visit but I had a couple of hours to myself to do some 'hoverating' before it got too hot
ID's under each photo
Eristalis species - possibly nemorum

Syrphus species - possibly ribesii

Eristalis pertinax

Eristalis species - possibly arbustorum

Eristalis species - possibly arbustorum

Myathropa florea - male
Thank you to Roger Morris / Nicola Garnham / Graham Watkeys of the UK Hoverflies facebook group for confirmation of IDs

 There were still plenty of butterflies about - mainly Small and Large Whites again - but also this very tatty Ringlet
a very obliging Brimstone

and a nice fresh Gatekeeper

But it was mainly the Large Whites that were most prolific - with some squabbling for the prime spot on the flowering thistles

And it was another day of not ONE Harlequin ladybird sighting - instead there were plenty of 7-spots again
I'm not very good at identifying Darters - this one could be an immature Ruddy or Red or even a female - either way it posed just long enough for me to grab two side photos and a head on shot

The Teal Hide was fairly busy with a Little Egret / five juvenile Lapwings / three juvenile Little Grebes / three flyby Grey Wagtails / a Green Sandpiper and lots of young Mallards and Coots

juvenile Little Grebes
My friend enjoyed his first visit to the reserve too and particularly liked the layout and privacy of the many hides
My birthday ended with a drink with my friend then watching the football with Mum - shame England didn't make it through to the finals but they done well to get to where they did
This morning I was on dog-sitting duty whilst Mum popped to work but before she did we found this intact exuvia on one of her pond plants - thanks to the experts on the UK Dragonflies & Damselflies Facebook group it was narrowed down to one of the Hawker species
After Mum left Gizzy the dog and myself done a little bit of 'birding' in the back garden

Song Thrush



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