Monday, 21 April 2014


 The weather warmed up on Easter Monday 21st with a much warmer breeze blowing in from the east rather than the chilly winds of the last few weeks. This speckled wood pictured above was one of a handful seen around the country park enjoying the sunshine in the morning.

This red admiral pictured above was rather surprisingly, the first one seen at the park this year, found resting on the seawall.
Other butterflies enjoying the sunshine were the first holly blue of the year, orange-tip,peacock and small tortoiseshell.
At least two adders were reported at the park on Sunday with one of them possibly this one found late morning sadly run-over by a car on the approach road along to the car park. There were plenty of cars arriving at the park on Easter Monday and this adder sadly didn't realise how dangerous crossing the road would be.

As I was carrying my litter-picker when I discovered the adder, I picked it up with the picker whilst it was still alive, removed it from the road and then placed it back alongside a nearby trackside hedge where it had been seen by Tony Riley an hour earlier. Although it wriggled a little towards the vegetation, another check of it an hour later found it dead.
This common lizard was resting almost vertically on a tussock of grass to catch the morning rays of the sun.

A sedge warbler was discovered singing along the park dyke from inside a bramble bush on Monday morning. Also two yellow wagtails flew over calling as did a lesser redpoll when it passed over the car park. A willow warbler singing from trees in the corner of the park would be just passing through.

Twenty-four black-tailed godwits fed in and around the pools in the fields while in the Colne five brent geese were on the mud near Batemans Tower.

The saltmarsh at the country park is dotted with the small white flowers of scurvy grass, pictured above.

Moth-trapping has been poor over the last fortnight with clear skies and chilly northerly winds.
This pale prominent pictured above, was the first one of the season during Sunday night. Thirty moths were noted which is an improvement on some recent trapping nights with low catches.
Other moths recorded were blossom underwing, swallow prominent, brimstone, shuttle-shaped dart, hebrew character, streamer, common quaker, red chestnut, oak-tree pug and brindled pug.
The first maidens blush was also noted for the first time this year. Its fairly regular at the park and one or two others should be noted here during this summer.

 David Nicholls photographed this newly emerged large red damselfly that had just crawled up a reedmace stem in his West Mersea garden-pond. The damselfly is so fresh out from the nymph case, it hasn't acquired any colour yet.

Adrian Amos reported from his West Mersea garden holly blue, speckled wood and orange-tip butterflies on Monday.

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