Friday, 20 February 2015

Moth trap 18.02.15

I put the moth trap out last night and like I said at the start of January, I was hoping for some good moths to kick off the mothing year. In January, it was way too cold and silly me, I put the trap out and got nothing. So last night I checked the weather and crossed my fingers.
So what did I catch...

I caught nothing. I'm starting to think all moths have left my area. I'm going to have to put it out when spring starts in March, but for now, enjoy some of my favourite and most colourful species I trapped last year again.




Thursday, 19 February 2015

New tick and fantastic find 19.02.15

So far in 2015 I have seen  new species; Rock Pipit, Bewick's Swan and now a Red-Throated Diver!

I've had better look so far with birds than moths. The diver has been at Fairhaven lake for a few days now and I have been keeping up to date with its presence, thanks to David McGrath. There have been some great pictures uploaded, so I hoped I was going to manage some great views of it.

The weather has been mild during the week, but unfortunately today the weather turned for the worst. It started raining and the wind was stronger. But a true birder will face any weather ;) so I begged mum to take me to Lytham.

There were not many people there, and only two other birders. The diver was in the middle of the lake drifting around with the current. Mallards were scattered around with the odd Tufted Duck, and a group of Oystercatchers were making a noise on the edge of one of the islands.

It was easy to spot the diver but we were still a far distance away from it. I decided to walk round to the opposite side, hopefully to get a better view of it. Fortunately, I did get closer and much better shots of it. The light didn't help, but I didn't mind.

I spent around half an hour at the lake and then went on a really quick beachcomb, literally a few minutes. A lot of whelks and razorpod shells had been washed ashore, along with a couple of whelk egg balls. I also found a washed up bird, which has taken a while to get correctly identified. There was a list of what it could have been (winter plumage);
  • Great Crested Grebe
  • Red Throated Diver (would have been a coincidence)
  • Black Throated Diver
  • Great Northern Diver
After conferring with Ben Garrod and Paolo Viscardi, we eventually came to a conclusion. It wasn't a Grebe and it wasn't a RTD. That left the other two divers. I sent them another picture but this time with a scale. Paolo said that it was the GND, and after some confusion with Ben, he agreed.
So today I have seen two new species of divers, but I am only ticking the Red Throat off. I cant wait to have the final skull.


Anyway, it was a good time spent outdoors and I look forward to seeing some more new species during the rest of 2015.

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Wednesday birding and beachcomb

On Wednesdays I usually go to the docks with my Granddad. We went for an hour and a half and managed to see a few species. When we got there, the usual flock of 150+ of Black Headed Gulls swooped over to us for their bag of food. They were very noisy. Some have blue rings on which I have recorded before, they are part of a Black Headed Gull project.
BHG feather stuck on beak

In the dock basin where two Cormorants diving around bringing up small fish. Over the hour and a half they were joined by four others. One with a white belly flew right above me, I must have looked like a fool trying to capture it on my camera.

I decided to walk left for about ten minutes and was greeted by a couple of Goosanders, they soon flew down stream. A couple of Mallards were more welcoming, sunning themselves on the side. A noisy Wren showed he was there in some old brambles. Two more Mallards flew upstream.
I turned back round and we headed for the other side of the river. I went along the bank side keeping an eye out for washed up items.

I ended up with a fishing weight, an old Bengal Silver fork, a few bones along with a rabbit skull, two mermaids purses (thornback) and a pocket full of colourful feathers. I also got a worn out bird box, which will soon be fixed and nailed up a tree in the garden.

A Robin and Blackbird were scavenging around the leaf litter, and were startled by an unusual presence of a Redshank, which itself must have been scared off further downstream as it came flitting down with a noisy alarm call.

It was a good day, the sun was out and it was warm, and the findings were quite good seeing as the tide didn't come in that high.
Hopefully we will be back a few more times during half term to see what is out there again.