Wednesday, 18 June 2014


A couple of corn buntings were singing their jangling song from roadside wires beside Chapmans Lane and Dawes Lane in the evening sun on Wednesday 18th. There was no sign today of the other corn bunting on the East Mersea road near Bocking Hall.

Another notable sighting on the wires beside the East Mersea road was a silhouetted tawny owl seen just after dark near Fen Farm on Wednesday. The first sighting of the Shop Lane birds for some time.
Several nights ago two little owls were also perched on roadside wires on Sunday at dusk with one beside Bromans Farm and the other near the village shop.

The barn owl provided some close views at the park at dusk on Saturday 14th, as it hunted over the areas of long grass on the main park.

The noisiest birds on the park was a pair of avocets anxiously watching over their newly hatched three young chicks near the Point. Two of the pale coloured chicks can be seen together on the left in the picture above. Seven avocets were on the pools here with another seven birds on the pools in the fields.

Also seen at the Point were 3 little terns, 3 common terns, one dunlin, 4 lapwing, reed bunting, two sand martins and 5 linnets.

There was the nice sight of at least two very young lapwing chicks seen on Wednesday feeding along a muddy edge in the pools in the fields. The two parents keeping a nervous watch over the area, including mobbing the kestrel sitting on the nearby tree.
Also on the pools were two teal, shoveler, 12 redshank and a brood of mallard. The female shoveler with seven ducklings was on the central ditch and the swans on the dyke still had six cygnets and 8 tufted duck were present too.

On the pond another adult swan was present, 2 little egrets in the trees and 2 pairs of little grebes.

The marsh harrier was reported flying over the fields on Monday morning -a regular occurrence at the moment. The cuckoo was flitting between bushes and doing lots of calling from the trees beside the park's overflow car park on Saturday 14th. At the end of the day 30 swifts circled round at dusk screaming high above the park. At the start of the day a male marsh harrier glided over fields on both sides of Bromans Lane.

Adrian Amos has been privileged to have not one turtle dove visiting his garden recently but now a second bird has been coming to his East Road garden in West Mersea on at least three consecutive days.
Steve Entwistle noted three sand martins at the park on the 17th while two cuckoos were still calling on Saturday and Sunday at Maydays farm, and also one heard on Langenhoe.

An adder was seen basking at the park on Saturday 14th and a brimstone butterfly flew through the Firs Chase garden on Wednesday 18th.

A little bit of colour along the park's clifftop with this flowering everlasting pea.

The latest hawkmoth to visit the moth trap in the Firs Chase garden was this handsome pine hawkmoth pictured above and below, found during Friday night.

The pine hawkmoth has become a regular visitor to the traps at the country park in recent summers, with the first seen on Sunday night.

The eyed hawkmoth with its strikingly coloured eye on the hindwing, was at the trap at the park on Sunday night.

Chris Williams visited the park from Shropshire to carry out some coastal mothing on Sunday night and was rewarded with the impressive tally of seven species of hawkmoth -  a record haul for here in one night. Also noted amongst the seventy other species were two cream spot tigers, a sand dart and blotched emerald.

The second record for the park of lilac beauty was at the trap on Friday night. The distinctive leading edge of the wings has a crumpled effect.

The first swallow-tailed moth of the summer arrived during Friday night with this individual looking particularly sulphur coloured.

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