Archive for the Category » insects «

Friday, December 09th, 2016 | Author:

Two of these moths have been spotted hibernating in one of the sheds on the WWA Reserve img_0205

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Monday, March 07th, 2016 | Author:

Thanks to active member Phil, we have a Flickr group which is populated with loads of fantastic pictures of the insect and bird life that eager photographers have catalogued on their visits to the site, including Firecrests and Lesser redpoll. It’s setup as an open group so you can contribute your own pictures and videos to share with everybody. Please do! You’ll find a permanent link in the sidebar to the right.

Sunday, November 10th, 2013 | Author:

Plenty of insects enjoying the sunshine at the reserve this afternoon, including a few Marmalade hoverflies (Episyrphus balteatus) and this lovely Red Admiral (Vanessa atalanta)

Red Admiral


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Thursday, September 09th, 2010 | Author:

It struck me this year in my weekly monitoring of butterflies that I didn’t see more than an occasional butterfly at a time on buddleia (known as the ‘butterfly bush’) whereas last year I saw on at least 3 occasions more than 10 (comma, peacock, painted ladies, red admiral). It’s all been a bit disappointing this year apart from a flurry of gatekeepers and not on buddleia. Has anyone had a different experience with buddleias this year?

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Friday, April 23rd, 2010 | Author:

my first visit for a while, too long really.
I was plagued by foliage getting in the way of my “perfect” shots, also unwanted branches.
We could also blame the creatures themselves, they don’t want to be pestered do they?

here a wren tries to hide under a leaf -and nearly succeeds.

it’s time to say “aah” as the ever present blue tits pose for us.

among the leaves, again.

the fritillaries on show again, though with some frost damage.
I managed to hide those to the rear of this shot, they appear lighter.

a peacock butterfly suns itself on a log heap, after all the cold, it’s nice to see some beneficial sunshine.
Also seen, orange tip and speckled wood.

I saw a male mallard chase away a duckling earlier, the female seems to tolerate him still.
He’s a bit of a mongrel, a bit dull. He may grow up to be a she, we’ll see.
Anyway he has found the surplus seeds below the feeders, so he should survive OK.

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Thursday, August 06th, 2009 | Author:

a few snippets from today

the adult little grebes seem to be feeding only some of their young.
Those that can dive and feed are chased away, much like a coot would do.

There’s regular fish for those still in favour

a fleeting attack over the Mere from the sparrowhawk.
I was watching the grebes, when everything on the water scuttled away in a panic.
Then along came the predator. He failed to catch anything this time.
Record shot.

a distant view of a red kite. Others have been seen near Verulamium Park,
Gorhambury residents we believe. Record shot.

here, I have broken my own rule for photos. on the Mere.
I only post what I capture on site, but to do justice to red kites
have included a ‘real’ image taken by myself in Wales,
just to show what is circling above our heads!
Always look up when you are meandering about, don’t tread on anything nasty. . . .

two shots of a gatekeeper butterfly

what I first took to be a muntjac in the Pyghtle area.
My reference book informs me it is a female roe deer, which does not have antlers.
Both sexes of muntjac are horned to a greater or lesser extent.

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Saturday, July 04th, 2009 | Author:

lovely butterflies these.

I really like the fact that commas are so well adapted for camouflage,
yet are such a dazzling insect when they spread their wings.

01.07.09 – 02.07.09

a speckled wood.

a young dunnock seems overcome by the heat.
I know how it feels.
A similar pose that adopted when “anting”, but aimed at getting ventilation.

this coot, though a parent to 8 chicks, still collecting nest material.

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Friday, June 26th, 2009 | Author:

it’s been a while since I posted anything, so,
spread across the last month or so, here goes.
Newest stuff first, backwards in time as we move down the page.

Summer, while popular with most people, does not afford much in the way of photo opportunities bird-wise -too many leaves!

Hence some of the other creatures included here.

a nuthatch popped up for just a brief appearance in front of the hide.
So brief, that this was my one and only shot, as he left.

a heron flies in for a bit of easy poaching, moorhen and coot chicks in mind, no doubt.
Instead however, he flew into a territorial fight with another heron.
Lots of squawking ensued.
Hard to photograph in the trees.

the ever cheerful coot.
Just after a huge territorial bust up with a moorhen, he/ she started gathering nest material.
Odd, considering the 2 adults on the Mere have 8 chicks of all sizes at present.
Here is a youngster helping mum, or dad.

just managed to catch this shy great spotted woodpecker.
Hard to get a clear shot amongst the ropes and pulleys.
Think it’s a female.

a broad bodied chaser.
Handsome isn’t she?
I think its a female, males are blue according to the reference books.

one of those tiny blue things we see zooming about all of the time,
a blue tailed damselfly.
Still for just one moment here.

on a day devoid of birds, I found this fellow.
Call him Clint, as I don’t know his name!

a nice view of a dunnock’s tongue.

lovely colours on a male gadwall, he didn’t stay long I gather.

a large white butterfly, nice background, cannot remember exactly what it was.

a lovely orange tip, they rarely settle it seems to me.
Try to photograph one and you’ll see!
If only the sun was out along with the insects


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Tuesday, April 01st, 2008 | Author:

Sunday 30.03.08
the newly planted butterfly meadow area next to the hide,
has proved itself a success, so early in the year too.

comma perched on “honesty”

comma perched on a perenniel wallflower

peacock sunbathing on a stone

fritillaries appear again.
how long will they last this year??

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Sunday, May 20th, 2007 | Author:

I went back and got some pictures of the fish, though it’s not easy to do so when they’re small and underwater. These were in the mere itself, right on the edge, next to the far end of the bridge. There was a shoal of about 50 or more.

Also spotted were both male and female bullfinches feeding at the same time. The male is the more colourful of the two, at the bottom.

I had my macro lens so I went hunting for smaller beasties. Here are some that I found. Note the three aphids line astern on the stem above the moth.

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