Sunday, 21 May 2017

Sunday May 21

Dave joined me this morning hopeful that some of the species seen on Friday might still be present. There was a light southerly breeze, but it didn't feel all that warm in the occasional sunny intervals.

Two Hares and Red-legged Partridge were in just about the most artificial habitat that Morton Bagot possesses.

Wildlife on the show jumping arena
Skylarks sometimes sing on the ground

On the morning of my last visit a flock of 10 Bee-eaters were stopping off from an over-shooting migratory flight at Barford, little more than 10 miles away. If only I had known at the time. They were not seen subsequently, so we headed straight for the beehives. Nothing doing of course.

We also tried the Mandarin Pond (as it is now known). Nothing there either.

Normal service seems to have been resumed. The Corn Bunting had gone, but a Cuckoo was still singing. The Little Egret was still present, and we also located the Little Owl. No Gadwalls or Teal, but the Little Ringed Plover was back.

Inevitably, with no new birds to entertain us, I started looking for insects and other mini-beasts. Here are a selection of the ones seen this morning.

Banded Demoiselle
Seven-spot Ladybird
Nursery Web Spider
Mother Shipton moth
Thought to be an Orange-tailed Mining Bee - Andrena haemorrhoa
Same as above
Azure Damselfly highlighting the U shaped mark on first segment
Hoverfly sp - Sphaerophoria sp
This last photograph has been reidentified. I submitted the record to irecord and got a response saying they can't be accepted unless identified by a hoverfly recorder, followed smartly by another response pointing out it is outside the known range of what I had guessed it was.

Hoverfly sp then. Many thanks to Roger for telling me that the yellow sides to the thorax point to it being of the genus Sphaerophoria. A quick bit of reading up on the Internet clarified that there are 11 British species of that genus and that microscopic examination of genitalia is required to identify them to species level.


  1. Hi I have just started a blog for birders in the Stratford on Avon area ,the link is,as of yet there are no photos on the blog ,they will be added when I get a cable to link camera to iPad
    Many thanks Phil

    1. Hi Phil
      Good luck. I had no camera when I first started, but photos will definitely enhance the look of your blog