Friday 26 June 2009

Star Lane Summer update

Turtle Dove (heard) was a new addition to the Star Lane list today.
Also of interest was a second (and third but looked as if it had been cut/chewed off) bee orchid.
Pyramidal orchids are now up to 5 but still no sign of a Common Spotted Orchid.
There are good numbers of Dragon and Damsel Flies but I'm going to have to brush up on those before I can report on those. Butterflies have included Painted Lady, Large and Small Skipper, Small Tortoiseshell, Large white, Holly Blue, Common Blue (picture) and lots of Meadow Brown.

Thursday 25 June 2009

Seven Whale Thriller

It's been some morning. I got a tip-off from Phil, my builder friend next door, that a pod of Humpback Whales were passing the heads (counted seven in all). Then, the brick cleaner told us Michael Jackson was dead. Unforgettable!

Sunday 21 June 2009

Canvey West End (continued)

Also of interest today were...
Lots of Marbled White (above top), Tube Web Spiders (I think) (above left), unidentified vetch style bush (middle) and masses of Pyramidal orchids (right).

Common Spotted Orchids

Fathers Day was marked this year with a trip to Canvey West End for some orchid hunting.
It's a fantastic place to see Common Spotted Orchids and we were treated to a display that really showed off how varied in size, colour and markings this orchid can be.
I could have shown more, but I've edited it down to my 3 favourite flowers of the day...
From left to right; mass of orchids, perfect specimen, stunning pink and white version, and a perfectly white albino version.

Monday 8 June 2009

Uncle Pete's

Uncle Pete's house

Bar-shouldered Dove

Crested Pigeon

Female Satin Bowerbird
We've just been up the coast to celebrate 'the Queen's birthday' with Uncle Pete and family. He owns his very own Rainham Marshes in a place called Raleigh, NSW.

On the trip up I saw three new species: Pied Butcherbird (joined us for a roadside lunch), White-necked Heron and Brahminy Kite.

Others added during the weekend: Buff-banded Rail (Surprisingly tame for a rail. Drinking from Pete's recently flooded swimming pool.), White-headed Pigeon, Regent Bowerbird (c40 'brown birds' and a single male around Bellingen Island).

And, of note in and around Raleigh: a pair of Osprey nesting on the the rail bridge in Urunga took flight every time a freight train passed through; 20+ King Parrots in Pete's back yard; an Emu off the road near Bellingen; Black, Little and Grey Headed Flying foxes roosting on Bellingen Island.

Tuesday 2 June 2009

Everything but birds

Pictures taken at Star Lane over the last few days...
Bee Orchid (top left), Tufted Vetch (top right), Lesser Broomrape (I think), Painted Lady butterfly, dead mole, Common Lizard (minus tail and pregnant).