Flashing Tiger, Hidden Wren

I should be used to it now, but another day of rain still comes as a disappointment, this is not how July is supposed to be! The night was not too cold so I was hoping for  a few moths at least. I got to the trap and heard a scurrying within, was it a mouse, or more likely a wren. I waited but nothing came out so I went and opened the shutters leaving the trap open for it to fly out. When I started to empty the trap a few bird droppings told me it had probably been a wren. As I went down the trap there was fortunately little sign of predated moths and there was a very fine garden tiger, not  a moth I see very often these days.

garden tiger

When I put it onto a leaf for the picture it went into full “I’m a toxic moth” mode, flashing the hind wings and red at the head. As I got down to just four or so egg boxes right at the bottom of the trap I realised that whatever it has been scurrying it was still there, as I lifted out an egg box off flew a wren, it had been hiding in the bottom of the trap all the time I was emptying it!

I was doing paperwork all morning and into the afternoon, but as the rain eased in the afternoon I ventured out as I needed to go over to the eastern shore of Ibsley Water. At the Tern hide a common sandpiper was perched on the wooden rail for a short time.

common sandpiper

Much rarer, but not much to look at was the mudwort in one of the puddles near the Goosander hide, there are quiet a few plants now, The picture shows the spatulate leaves of the mudwort mixed in with the smaller ones of the alien invader Crassula helmsii.

mudwort with Cassula

At the end of the day locking up the Ivy North hide I once again broke the lake record count for mute swan, there were 54, so the count still goes on upward, mind there are very few on any of the other lakes on the reserve, or beyond at present, presumably an indication of a general lack of waterweed.



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