After yesterdays successful visit, which made me feel 'human' again, I decided to venture back to Maple Lodge NR this morning. I only intended to stay until lunchtime but both the rain and the atmosphere kept me there longer and I finally left at 5pm, a mere eight hours after I arrived.....
The overcast sky meant there were not many photo opportunities, and not too much to see, but you can always find something at Maple Lodge.
The bad light also meant every photo I took was quite 'noisy' so apologies in advance for the dreadful pics.
|An unobliging Chiffchaff|
|Grey Wagtail in front of the Clubhouse Hide|
|Coal Tit at the Clubhouse Hide|
Nuthatch at the Clubhouse Hide
|Great Spotted Woodpecker at the Clubhouse Hide|
I had a bit more success at the long screen by the Barn Owl Meadow, with three insect species that I haven't knowingly seen before. However, the light was still not in my favour and couple that with the how fast these critters were, my photos really don't do them justice.
I've not had time to fully look into any ids for the below, but I think the first is an Ichneumon species. It had the longest ovipositor I've ever seen....
The second little gem is, I think, one of the Jewel wasps....
and the last is, I think, one of the Sawfly species.....
There was also a wasp making a lot of noise by scrapping at the wood....
I spent a fair bit of today inside the comfortable Clubhouse Hide. The lure of a hot coffee and great view gets me every time. The added bonus today was the great company of Paul, Gary and Jack. Even after they left and I had the reserve to myself for nearly two hours, I still favoured the Clubhouse Hide.
A Little Egret had landed earlier in the day and was fishing around the exposed shingle islands. Eventually another bird joined it and they made their way nearer to the hide. My photos are still not great but they will do for now.
Despite the rain, despite the heavy cloud, despite the awful photos, I actually had a really enjoyable day and felt a bit more weight lifted off my shoulders. Nature really is a wonderful thing.