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A Ponds Visit

A place I haven’t frequented a lot this year mainly due I think to the habit lose and the lack of large Dragonflies., however I decided on another look. I picked up on a few Butterflies Gatekeeper, Meadow Brown and Ringlets, no matter how hard I looked nothing else could be found.

Dragonflies, I was grazed by a single Emperor, I was hoping for at least Four Spotted Chasers and maybe a Broad Bodied Chaser thrown it, but sadly bit wasn’t to be.

Damselflies were a bit better with four species found a single Emerald being the first of the year, that along with Azure, Blue-tailed, and Common Blue were the only species found.

Other highlights today were Six Spot Burnet Moth, Shaded Broad Bar Moth, Cheilosia illustrata Hoverfly, and Chrysotoxum festivum Hoverfly,

Chrysotoxum festivum Hoverfly

Butterfly Day

Out to Kiplingcotes first to see Marbled White, but arriving in rainy conditions didn’t have me hoping for the best. I had a look at the weather forecast and it was due to pass at about 10am, I was now glad I’d brought a book to read. 9am and the weather was clearing, grapped my stuff and off I went.

First highlight was a Six Spot Burnet Moth followed shortly after by a fly over Hobby. On the reserve to the left side going thru the gate there was a number of Green veined White Butterflies, along with Large Skippers, Small Whites and numerous Gatekeepers, only found a few Marbled White Butterfly. Decided on trying the higher slopes, up onto the banking, this is where I found numerous Marbled White Butterflies, along with Small Tortoiseshells, Meadow Browns, Ringlets, Small Skippers. Birds up here were Whitethroat, Buzzard, Mistle Thrush and Yellowhammer

Since I was near to North Cave I did a quick visit to see the Dragonflies, only picking up three species Ruddy Darter (New for the Year), Blue tailed Damselfly and Common Damselfly. Butterflies were Gatekeeper, Green veined White, Meadow Brown, Ringlet, Small Skipper, and Speckled Wood.

Click Images to make Larger

Marbled White


Another trip out to Bempton Cliffs, hoping that it would be third time lucky in seeing the Black browed Albatross, but as the day went on it was evident it was going to another no show.

The Albatross wasn’t the only celebrity this weekend, we’d also come to see the Red tailed (Turkistan) Shrike, which gave itself up far easier than the Albatross. Also with the shrike was a pair of Nuthatch, which apparently are also a rare bird here at Bempton.

On the Cliffs were the usual birds Gannets, Kittiwakes, Fulmar, Razorbill, Guillemot, Puffin, Guillemot. A couple of moths also a Common Footman along with Narrow Bordered five Spot Burnet Moth.

Looks like another trip out to see the Albatross then

Bird List :- Blackbird, Blackcap, Buzzard, Carrion Crow, Fulmar, Gannet, Guillemot, Herring Gull, Kittiwake, Puffin, Razorbill, Reed Bunting, Red Tailed (Turkistan) Shrike, Rock Dove/Feral Pigeon, Sedge Warbler

Red tailed Shrike

Red tailed Shrike

Bullcliffe NR

Sun was out a few hours to spare after work, I thought about Bullcliffe for a hour or so hadn’t been for a while. I was shocked in the lack of butterfly action here Ringlets and Meadow Brown were in good numbers but very little else, took me a while to find a couple of Small Skipper and a very tatty Painted Lady. I also eventually found a couple of Narrow bordered Five Spotted Burnet Moths after nearly giving up

Narrow Bordered Five Spotted Burnet Moth

Langsett Reservoir

Out onto the moors around Langsett tonight looking for Nightjar, come 9pm and a couple of male birds started ‘churring’ was long after that we managed to get good flight views of 2 male birds and a female bird for the evening. Over birds seen on the evening were Stonechat, Woodcock and Long eared Owl, birds heard were Red Grouse, Tawny Owl

Old Moor RSPB

An after work visit to Old Moor mainly and hopefully to see Broad Bodied Chaser, nice warm day and the news that the Dragonflies were flying well today on arrival, I had my fingers crossed.

News of Red-eyed Damselfly on the large pond had me heading over there first and was easy to pick up on one of the nearest lily pads, also getting some decent images, also on this pond were Azure Damselfly, Four Spotted Chaser and Emperor Dragonfly.

Around on the other ponds were more Four Spotted Chasers, along with a few Azure and Common Blue Damselfly, also nice to see a Brimstone and a Common Blue Butterflies, alas not the hoped for Broad Bodied Chaser this visit

Red-eyed Damselfly

Potteric Carr

Since the weather forecast was for a nice day, I decided on a visit down to Potteric Carr for some Dragonfly action, I was getting very little out at the ponds, so I headed south after work.

I arrived about 12 noon and entered the reserve and walked down the mother drain road, finding a few Common Blue Damselfly on my journey around to the loversall bank ponds. I was also finding a few Large Red Damselfly as well and quite a lot of Azure Damselfly. There was very little around the ponds and no Chasers especially, then I remembered the new ponds closer to the visitor centre, I hadn’t been to Potteric for a few years.

It was at these ponds that I found lots of Four Spotted Chasers, a few Emperor Dragonflies with one egg laying female, but none of my favourite Broad Bodied Chasers. I flushed up a Painted Lady Butterfly then I noticed a different Dragonfly on the path, turned out to be a female Black tailed Skimmer, a nice ending to a few hours at Potteric Carr.

A few bird highlights whilst I was there were Little Egret, Common Tern, Grey Heron, Garden Warbler, one I didn’t see was a Purple Heron, which was reported as a one day, however the bird was seen again the day after.

However why I had come over to Potteric Carr was mainly to see the breeding Black-winged Stilts, the news when I saw hadn’t been broken. As of 27th June the whole family seems to be doing well, with 4 chicks, the first breeding of these birds in Yorkshire. Video can be seen by pressing THIS

Bird List : Blackbird, Blackcap, Black headed Gull, Chaffinch, Chiffchaff, Common Tern, Coot, Gadwall, Gret Heron, Lapwing, Little Egret, Magpie, Mallard, Robin, Shoveler, Woodpigeon

Butterfly List : large White, Painted Lady, Speckled Wood

Dragonfly List : Black tailed Skimmer, Blue tailed Damselfly, Common Blue Damselfly, Emperor, Four Spotted Chaser, Large Red Damselfly

Black tailed Skimmer (Female)
Black-winged Stilt

Conwy RSPB

A place I hadn’t been to for a large number of years, we were on holiday in the area so I decided on spending a few hours here. It was a warm day but despite this I didn’t come across any Butterfly species on my visit today, quite a good list on the sightings board including Clouded Yellow. Blackcaps and Whitethroats were in good voice along with a few Cetti’s Warblers. I managed good views of Sedge Warblers but alas not Reed Warblers as they continued to sing out of sight low in the reeds. A friendly Robin came near as did a Dunnock. As I made my way around the site and visited various hides I picked up on a few species from here namely Tufted Duck, Little Grebe, Herring, Black headed and Lesser Black backed Gulls, Canada and Greylag Geese.

I managed to pick up the “Rattle” call of the Lesser Whitethroat and managed brief glimpses of the bird in the nearby bush, I then made my way down to the estuary were I found Grey Heron, Shelduck, Little Egret and House Martins collecting mud from the exposed mud flats.

Back on site a few more species were seen Reed Bunting, Blue Tit, a pair of Bullfinch, Buzzard, House Sparrows

Note an eventful day with little species seen all-round, lack of insects was disappointing

Bird List at Conwy : Blackbird, Blackcap, Black headed Gull, Blue Tit, Bullfinch, Buzzard, Canada Goose, Carrion Crow, Cetti’s Warbler, Chiffchaff, Coot, Dunnock, Gadwall, Goldfinch, Greenfinch, Grey Heron, Greylag Goose, Herring Gull, House Martin, House Sparrow, Jackdaw, Lapwing, Lesser Black backed Gull, Lesser Whitethroat, Little Egret, Little Grebe, Magpie, Mallard, Moorhen, Mute Swan, Oystercatcher, Pied Wagtail, Reed Bunting, Reed Warbler, Robin, Sedge Warbler, Shelduck, Starling, Tufted Duck, Whitethroat, Woodpigeon, Wren

For a full list of Holiday Sightings press THIS

Reed Bunting

A Pond Visit

A long overdue visit to the local ponds, hoping for a few larger Dragonflies. Birds noted on arrival were Blackcap, Bullfinch, Swifts, Swallow, Willow Warblers, Whitethroat, and Woodpigeon. There was also a few butterflies on the wing Large White, Orange tip and Small Heath.

However with lots of looking I couldn’t find any Dragonflies on the wing, I found this to be a bit of a surprise especially with good numbers of 4 Spotted Chasers now being seen around the country. I did find a few Damselflies species, Azure Damselfly, Large Red Damselfly were out in good numbers and I also found a single male Common Blue Damselfly.

Small Heath Butterfly
Common Blue Damselfly

Lesser Yellowlegs

News of a Lesser Yellowlegs down at Old Moor reserve had me popping out for the evening to get a look at my 3rd for the UK and a 2nd for Yorkshire. On-route I picked a friend up and headed off to Old Moor and then straight down to the Wath Ings hide, where we immediately picked up on the bird in question. Noticeably smaller the the nearby Redshanks but with a slender neck, longer legs, a fine and virtually straight bill, virtually now a regular vagrant to the UK shores, breeds in N.America.

Phone video grab picture below, video here press THIS

Lesser Yellowlegs

Other birds noted were Great Crested Grebe, Black headed Gulls, Little Egret, PIed Wagtail, Swift, Shelduck. On our way out of the reserve a Sparrowhawk took us by surprise as it flew from one of the hedges we were passing.

Bird List : Black headed Gull, Carrion Crow, Coot, Cormorant, Gadwall, Great Crested Grebe, Greylag Goose, Jackdaw, Lapwing, Lesser Black backed Gull, Lesser Yellowlegs, Little Egret, Mallard, Mute Swan, Pied Wagtail, Pochard, Redshank, Shelduck, Sparrowhawk, Swift, Tufted Duck, Woodpigeon