Saturday, 11 June 2011


There was enough warmth around on Saturday 11th for various butterflies to be on the wing, such as this small skipper. It was one of several seen along the Maydays and Reeveshall seawall during a mid-day walk. This one was resting out of the breeze on a common mallow flower.

Other butterflies seen were several meadow browns, 3 small tortoiseshell, large white, large skipper and also a couple of six-spot burnet moths too.

Close to the Maydays Farm 3 singing yellowhammers, corn bunting, 2 reed buntings, 10 house martins, cuckoo, 20 stock doves and a male marsh harrier were noted.

Along the Pyefleet the only waders seen on 3kms of mud during low tide were 25 oystercatcher, 20 redshank, curlew, 5 knot and 20 grey plover. Also on the mud were 40 shelduck and lots of black-headed gulls. In the channel 5 great grested grebes were diving to feed.

Over nearby Langenhoe there was a huge swirling mass of about 2000 swifts gathered high over the ranges. Also seen were eight marsh harriers, 2 kestrels and two Mediterranean gulls.
A corn bunting was singing from wires next to Chapmans Lane and Steve Entwistle saw the yellow-legged gull at the Strood in the afternoon.

This little sheltered field to the west of Shop Lane in East Mersea was visited on Friday 10th where a singing male yellowhammer was the main bird of interest. The overcast conditions weren't ideal for butterflies although a handful of meadow browns were seen on the creeping buttercups, shown in the picture above. Also seen were a few small heaths in a grass field and a small tortoiseshell.

One turtle dove was singing on wires over Shop Lane and another singing in a copse near the Oyster Fishery. Also heard were blackcap, chiffchaff and several common whitethroats, while a common tern flew south over the fields.

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