Posted by: mynaturaldiary | June 23, 2019

Midsummer moths

High summer brings out moths at the RSPB reserve at Saltholme,

First, the amazingly well camouflaged Buff Tips.

Buff-tip (Phalera bucephala)

They are patterned to match birch trees.

Next, an Elephant Hawk Moth.

Elephant Hawk-moth (Deilephila elpenor)

This one was pumping blood back into his wings, prior to flying off.

Then a Figure of Eighty.

Figure of Eighty (Tethea ocularis)

And a Burnished Brass

Burnished Brass (Diachrysia chrysitis)

All these were caught in a trap used to count the species on the reserve before being released back into the wild.

Darters are back in numbers.

Common Blue Damselfly (Enallagma cyathigerum)

The damselfly keeps still (unlike the cameraman).

This chap appears to be lost.

Golden-bloomed grey longhorn beetle (Agapanthia villosoviridescens)

They are normally found in the area of Turkey to Kazakhstan. We appear to have one at Saltholme!

This one appears to be a member of the Cantharidae family.

There are 4072 species of beetle in the UK in 103 families. Globally 25% (400,000) of all animal species are beetles…

There are plenty of plants to feed on this time of year.

Of course, the birds are still on the reserve.

Ringed Plovers were seen,and this video shows both species together.

Ringed plovers have a yellow bill, with a black tip, and no eye ring.

Ringed Plover (Charadrius hiaticula)

Little Ringed Plovers have a black bill, with a yellow tip, and a yellow eye ring.

Little ringed plover (Charadrius dubius)

When on the ground they have the habit of keeping still, then running quickly, before stopping and keeping still. This pattern is the same as the one shown by Lapwings.

Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)

A Sandpiper was walking at the waters edge

Common Sandpiper (Actitis hypoleucos)

Avocets, the bird adopted by the RSPB as its symbol were seen from Saltholme hide.

They are stunning birds to watch with their filtering action when feeding in the shallow water, rather like a Flamingo as they sweep their bills through the muddy water in search of their food, which is mostly invertebrates.

Avocet (Recurvirostra avosetta)

Another fine looking bird is the Great Crested Grebe, which were seen on the waters.

Great Crested Grebe (Podiceps cristatus)

There were also Little Grebes

Little Grebe (Tachybaptus ruficollis)

Ducklings were also seen.

Pochard (Aythya ferina)

The latter being Tufted Ducks.

Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)

Shoveler were also present; ducks with huge bills.

Shoveler (Anas clypeata)

Mallard were also seen

Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)

along with Lapwings

and Little Egrets.

Little Egret (Egretta garzetta)

Teal were also there

Teal (Anas crecca)

Moorhens were cleaning and preening themselves.

Moorhen (Gallinula chloropus)

Common Terns are a summer visitor to the reserve. They are nesting this year on special floats moored in the middle of the waters.

They are fine looking birds.

Common Tern (Sterna hirundo)

Sand Martins were still nesting.

They fly through the air at speed.

Sand Martin (Riparia riparia)

One bird which hovers when hunting are Kestrels. Once it detects its prey it swoops down.

Kestrel (Falco tinnunculus)

 


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