Sunday, 9 September 2012

Summers End

Summer is most definately coming to an end, although the weather over the last few days has been exceptional, really warm and sunny. The nights are drawing in and are definately cooler, this has reflected in what I've been seeing out on the ground. Grasshopper and Cricket numbers have dropped right off, walking around the hedges of the park yesterday I saw only one Dark Bush Cricket and no Speckled Bush or Grasshoppers, whereas last week I was falling over them.

Butterfly numbers have dropped too, there are still good numbers of Meadow Brown, Gatekeeper and Large White, but not as many as a week ago. Small Tortoiseshell and Peacock seem to have had their last flourish too, with only a few being seen.

This Speckled Wood was also seen this week.

A pair of moth caterpillars have kept me interested also this week, with the identity of the second being a little difficult to establish. The first is another example of the Vaporer Moth caterpillar.

The second I believe is the caterpillar of the Scarlet Tiger moth, Andy Carey agrees too but if you think different then please let me know. I found it in a gateway to a field in amongst bramble and grass.

Bugs have kept me going again this week too. I have added another species to my list of adult Shield bugs, finally finding a Hawthorn Shield bug.

but also a different stage larva or nymph of the same species.

You will remember the brightly coloured Troilus Luridus larva I showed you the other week, here it is again incase you have forgotten.

well here it is in a slightly different form.

Stunning I think you will agree.
A couple of birds for you next, adult and juvenile Mute Swan.

The Juv' really is an ugly duckling compared to its parents.The five cygnets are doing really well and proving to be a great draw for the locals. The Terrapin are making the last of the summer sun too, basking on what has become their favourite tree since the last one was messed about with by the fishermen and subsequently lost to the flood earlier in the year.

This shot was taken yesterday (sat), but slightly out of shot was this next critter, it was the size of a tennis ball and about 12 inches further up the tree.

The previous three were almost definately Red Eared Terrapin but is this one the same species? it doesn't look like it does it?

To finish off this week I have some dragonflies, I spent quite a bit of time this week trying to get dragonflies in flight, not as easy as it sounds. Here are a few of my efforts.

not brilliant but I'm getting there. The top one, I believe, is a Migrant Hawker whereas the bottom two are Southern Hawkers. Two different locations in and around Hereford. I did manage to get shots of a pair of Migrant Hawkers doing what they do best.

and funnily enough whilst I was trying to get them this one landed at the top of the stick.

Like buses, nothing for ages then three at once.
I hope you have enjoyed this weeks posting. Oh and for those of you who might have seen the post relating to me selling my 600mm lens and are wondering where its gone, I have been talked out of selling by my friends, so I will hang on to it for a while.