Sunday, 11 July 2010


The hot weather continued into the weekend with both Saturday 10th and Sunday 11th seeing temperatures into the mid to high 20's. A walk along part of the seawall by the Strood seawall, pictured above, during the late morning coincided with the high tide.

The family of kestrels were seen again on the recently cut hay field with a couple of noisy youngsters perching on the tall haystacks. A male sparrowhawk flew over from Ray Island towards West Mersea where it briefly met up with a second sparrowhawk. At the same time as the hawks were seen together, about 100 swifts were circling high over the houses.
Scanning the Feldy / Copt Hall area, two marsh harriers were seen flying over the fields.

The sunshine was ideal for butterflies and this male gatekeeper was one of several species seen around the hedgerows, grasslands and seawall. As the meadow brown season has reached its peak, the gatekeepers will be reaching theirs soon.

There were lots of skippers amongst the grass with this Essex Skipper joining small skippers and large skippers in the sunshine. Other butterflies seen included peacock, comma, small white, large white, small tortoiseshell, common blue and small heath.

The recent spell of fine weather has brought the sea lavender into flower on the saltmarshes, such as this patch near the Firs Chase caravan site.

Monty the JRT, had admired sea lavender the day before, and seemed more interested in whether he would be allowed to jump in the water to cool off. We were by the Pyefleet Channel by Maydays on Sunday 11th for a morning walk along the seawall. The tide was coming in and with a strong hot breeze, much bird activity seemed quiet.

Birds noted included 5 avocets, 150 black-tailed godwits, great crested grebe, singing corn bunting, reed bunting and yellowhammer, 3 little egrets, 2 marsh harriers on Reeveshall and 3 on Langenhoe.

This old lady moth was a surprise visitor around the fireplace in the house at Firs Chase, fluttering its big dark-brown wings. It must've been attracted into the house through the windows left open at night because of the muggy evening.

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