Despite the autumnal weather the moth trap continues to catch a reasonable range of species, Friday’s catch included two of the bigger wainscots, the large wainscot,
and the bulrush wainscot.
Neither of them particularly colourful species, unlike the frosted orange.
I know I have already posted this species a few times, but they are very fine and this one was very fresh. Autumn moths tend to be either bright yellow, orange or very dull indeed and the deep brown dart is certainly at the dull end, at least in terms of colour.
deep brown dart
Despite the extremely dull weather today there were some birds to see, the ruff remains on Ibsley Water and there were also 2 green sandpiper and a common sandpiper there too. A sign of the changing season is the slowly increasing number of wigeon, I saw at least 25 today, but there were also something over 75 hirundines, mostly swallow but also a number of house martin and even a few sand martin.
Recently the Goosander hide has been attracting allot of photographers trying to get shots of a fairly cooperative kingfisher. It also seems to be good for quiet a few other species too. I was especially pleased to see the trees that we leaned into the lake there being well used as perches by a range of species, including today, Walter, our returning great white egret.
Walter, our returning great white egret, you can just make out some of his rings.
The perches near the Goosander hide are being used by lots of birds, the rails I put up a few years ago were very popular with cormorant today.
A “drying-off” of cormorant.
Large numbers of cormorant have been mass fishing in Ibsley Water recently, something they only do when there are very large shoals of fish, of just the right size, on offer. This year there seem to be large numbers of perch and rudd to be caught, to judge from the many pictures we have been sent of cormorant with fish recently.
These same rails are also popular with gulls and I saw three different yellow-legged gull on there this afternoon, including this first winter bird.
Yellow-egged gull, in first winter plumage (or if you prefer 1st cy)
It was the first Sunday of the month and despite unpromising weather four volunteers turned out for a task this morning. For several years I have been meaning to get around to removing a patch of snowberry near the Ivy North hide, it has not spread very far but is a garden plant that really should not be in a semi-natural woodland. Finally today we got rid of it, or at least of as much of it as we could dig up, next spring we will see how much we missed!
I will end with a sure sign of autumn, a fungus, the reserve has a lot of fungi just now, I really struggle to identify them, but I think I know what this is, until someone puts me right, a fly agaric – this one complete with flies.
fungus gnat agaric