Monday, 8 July 2013


There was a colourful patch of poppies to admire near the Maydays Farm seawall on a scorching hot Sunday 7th. The heat haze hindered views into the distance but it was a nice feeling to have a warm breeze blowing.

Lots of meadow brown butterflies were on the wing with 70+ noted, some resting low down while many others feeding on flowers like this creeping thistle.

A handful of large skippers were also seen along the seawall top, this one nectaring on creeping thistle. Also on the wing were ten small tortoiseshells, small white and a couple of small / Essex skippers. Along the dyke an emperor dragonfly and a four-spotted chaser were flying about.

David Nicholls reported a very late green hairstreak in his West Mersea garden on the 7th. One of the latest sightings in Essex this summer and normally a month later than usual.

The incoming tide had covered most of Pyefleet mud by late morning with one greenshank, 50 redshank, 50 black-tailed godwit, 10 curlew, 10 oystercatchers the main waders noted. One great crested grebe, 3 common tern and a little tern were noted along the channel as well as a common seal heading upstream.

A hobby circled high over Langenhoehall marsh while a male marsh harrier was displaying and calling high up over the nearby Langenhoe ranges.

Around the Maydays farm, there were two yellow wagtails, singing corn bunting, 2 reed buntings, 3 reed warblers, 2 yellowhammers, lesser whitethroat and five house martins by the buildings.

One of the birds of note during a walk along the Strood seawall on a hot Monday 8th, was this adult Mediterranean gull pictured above in the centre amongst a few black-headed gulls. The bird posed long enough on the posts for this digi-binned picture to be taken. It later flew and landed in the middle of the channel.

Amongst the small selection of waders along the channel as the tide came in were two greenshank, 25 redshank, 10 curlew, whimbrel, one lapwing and ten oystercatchers. One common tern flew past as did a couple of little egrets and two grey herons flew off the fields.

Inside the seawall were 2 kestrels, 2 reed buntings, yellow wagtail, 5 singing reed warblers and 4 linnets.
The main butterflies of note were meadow browns and a few small tortoiseshells with a six-spot burnet moth catching the eye too.

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