Apres la deluge – un Merveille du Jour

At least half a dozen blackbirds were feeding around the Tern Hide when we opened up , and a Roe deer on the drive to the Centre car-park were the first wildlife sightings.  The usual round of opening up hides would have been un-remarkable but for a brief altercation between a grey heron and a couple of black-headed gulls.  We had spooked the heron as we opened up the Ivy South Hide , it had been standing just outside the window. It then flew around and decided to drop down onto one of the vegetated rafts, which was already occupied by a black-headed gull,

Grey heron, on vegetated raft, being mobbed by black-headed gull

This gull was joined by another who both mobbed the heron , which was only mildly distracted by the attention,. J ust been looking at the picture again, it seems the heron has  swallowed a coot!!

The reed bed cutting reported Friday had been prompted by a remark from one of our regular photographer visitors, enquiring about the return of the bittern and chances for good opportunities to see the beast.  From the Ivy North Hide we could see the work that Bob had put in to create the necessary habitat.

Reedbeds from Ivy North Hide

  The aftermath of last Thursday night’s flooding in the Tern Hide car-park was a considerable quantity of wet leaves and silt covering about half of the area.  This made for particularly slippery conditions, so a clean-up was the order of the day.

Before the big clean-up

Whilst not particularly difficult to shift there was quite a lot of it to clear up , but the result was satisfying,

A clean sweep

On the bird front we heard a Cetti’s warbler give its characteristic explosive song (don’t ask me to describe it!) from the path down to the Ivy South Hide. Mostly common ducks and coots about with some Egyptian geese as well as goosander seen.

Couldn’t resist the somewhat continental flavour to title this posting ( please excuse the lack of correct accenting – you just can’t get the right characters!) as, quite to our surprise and delight there was a Merveille du Jour on the wall above the overnight light trap.

Merveille du Jour

Whilst a stunning moth when seen as above, its lichen coloured camouflage makes it quite hard to spot against a suitable background.

How easily might this be overlooked if you didn’t know it was there?

One of the three species that are difficult to separate  (and shades of things to come) there were five  November Moth/ Pale November Moth/ Autumnal Moth along with the Merveille du Jour.

November Moth species



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