Monday, 10 August 2009

My Two Days Off

I'll split this post two ways, birds and moths. I'll start with...


Whilst at work on Saturday evening, Martin (from the Exe) phoned to say he had seen the Wood Sands, and that he had a small grey parrot-thingy sat in front of him on Seaton Marshes. Amazingly, about 40 minutes later when I was fumbling about in the backyard, it flew over heading west, calling as it went - quite a sight!

So, what was is? Well neither Martin or I know, but hopefully someone might. Thanks to Martin Wolinski for this photo...

Certainly a patch tick for me - whatever it is!?

Early on Sunday morining, after I'd covered over both moth traps I went for another early morning look over Blackhole Marsh - a tatic that gave me a Little Stint the day before. I wasn't there long 'til I realised the two Wood Sands had become three. And whilst I was watching them, thought I could here a fourth closer one but never actually saw it. A little later there were four here - I should have looked some more!

The Little Stint wasn't anywhere to be seen, but other birds included: 1 Hobby (flew low north), 9 Teal, 2 Shoveler, 3 Ringed Plover, 12 Dunlin, 12 Snipe, 5 Green Sands and 4 Common Sands.

After this, and after I went through the moth traps (which you can read about a little further down the page), I went up to Beer Head. It was quiet, but I still managed singles of Lesser Whitethroat and Sedge Warbler and three Wheatears. There were loads of Silver Y's and Painted Ladies about...

Ok so this bit isn't totally about birds!

This morning, Blackhole revealed the four Wood Sands still, a few Dunlin and Common Sands and at least two Yellow Wagtails, but little else. And that's all the birding time I had today.


I had both traps out on Saturday night, and the result was brilliant! The Skinner was in the front garden and gave me 119 moths of 25 species and the Robinson in the back which produced 120 moths of 36 species. This totalled 239 moths of 43 species. AWESOME! In the catch there were four garden firsts...

A VERY lovely Poplar Kitten

Scalloped Hook-tip, a real smart insect

Yellow-barred Brindle

One of the few Minors which are fairly easily identified; a Rosy Minor

The other 234 moths were: 63 Large Yellow Underwing, 37 Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing, 20 Silver Y, 15 Riband Wave, 9 Lesser Yellow Underwing, 9 Shuttle-shaped Dart, 9 Flame Shoulder, 6 Nut-tree Tussock, 6 Dingy Footman, 6 Jersey Tiger, 4 Brimstone, 4 Common Footman, 4 Uncertain, 3 Willow Beauty, 3 Early Thorn, 3 Black Arches, 3 Buff Ermine, 3 Common/Lesser Rustic, 2 Small Waved Umber, 2 Flame Carpet, 2 Dun-bar, 2 Red Twin-spot Carpet, 2 Ruby Tiger, and singles of: Rosy Footman, Leopard Moth, Iron Prominent, Pale Prominent, Swallow Prominent, Smoky Wainscot, Rustic, Spectacle, Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing, Blood-vein, Maiden's Blush, Single-dotted Wave, Small Fan-footed Wave, Dark Arches, Crescent Dart, Common Carpet, Yellow Shell, Bright-line Brown-eye and Magpie.

Here's a few more photos from this mega catch...

A much fresher insect than the first Blood-vein I caught, which you can see HERE

My second ever Leopard Moth - stunning!

My third ever Crescent Dart

The smartest Large Yellow Underwing I've ever caught!

Two of the Black Arches - note the size difference!!

The four Prominents, from left to right: Pale, Iron, Swallow and Poplar Kitten

And that's that. Tonight I will put the Robinson out but am not expecting much as it's quite windy.


  1. You old romantic! ;o)

    The parrot-thingy looks like a young Cockatiel. The only thing that's throwing me is the lack of orange face patch, but they do come in all sorts of colour variations...

  2. Thanks Gav!

    I heard a rumour that there's a self-sustaining population of these things in the darkest corner of our patch - so it's on my yearlist! : )