A stunning find!

Sunday, August 14th 2011

Yesterday afternoon one of our visitors, Mr Mark Allen, found this stunning Vapourer Moth caterpillar.  It was discovered basking on one of the wooden rails near to the Lake hide. (Our apologies for not being able to use your photographs at the moment.)

This  caterpillar is common throughout Britain and can be found feeding on most broad-leaved trees and shrubs. The moth that it becomes is less spectacular than the caterpillar. The male being mostly orange-brown with a single white spot on its wing.

 Once photographed it was returned to the lakeside area.

Vapourer Moth catterpillar

As the sun came out in small pockets there were large numbers of dragonflies sunning themselves on the boardwalks in the Scrapes. There appeared to be more male Common Darters than females.

Also, there were sightings of the Water Vole, frogs and toads.

Further along towards the Lake an unlikely visitor seems to have taken up residence!  Not something you usually expect to see at a Nature Reserve!

A Chicken gone wild!

Returning to the Visitor Centre, there were many smaller insects making the most of the warm and humid conditions. Along one of the smaller pathways a large group of Hoverflies were extremely active. Here a couple are feeding heartily from the nectar of the Great Burnet, which is, although it doesn't look like it, a member of the Rose family.

Hover-flies on Gt. Burnet

Yesterday the bird ringing team were at a local site ringing second broods of Swallows.  The nests were built just a little high up as you can see!

Looking for Swallows nests


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