Yesterday at Dungeness was fairly quiet for birds with Green, Wood and Common Sandpipers, 4 Great White Egrets and a Hobby being the main interest. However, on our way around the RSPB Reserve we encountered at least 5 Lesser Emperor Dragonflies with 1 on the ASRC pit pool near "The Pines", 1 from the Christmas Dell hide, 2 from the Dengemarsh hide and at least another 1 on the track near the ramp. They were very active & difficult to photograph in the heat but a couple did perch very briefly in front of the Dengemarsh hide. In the moth trap I had a rare micro the pRDB species: Bisigna procerella. A weevil: Curculio venusus made a better picture.
Went over to Oare Marshes on Sunday morning to look for the Southern Migrant Hawkers that this year have expanded from the Isle of Grain, and have been seen more widely along the north Kent coast. The Moth trap comtinues to bulge in the hot weather, with 3 new species for the garden since my last post: Leopard Moth, Coxcomb Prominent, and Catoptria pinella.
At Dungeness yesterdaythe ARC pit held the best selection of waders with Little Stints, Greenshank, Wood Sandpiper, Golden Plover, Dunlin, Little Ringed Plovers, Snipe, Curlew Sandpiper, Black-tailed Godwits and Lapwings. Nearby a juvenile Cuckoo posed on a wire. Elsewhere on The RSPB reserve a Great White Egret, 2 Little Egrets and a Marsh Harrier were on Dengemarsh. At Oare the Black-winged Stilts have been showing well but I believe they may have gone now. The moth trap has been busy with the hot weather with 77 species being recorded on one night. Interesting records have included the first Satin Lutestring for 8 years and the second example of the Olive, following the first one last year.
At Dungeness on Wednesday a Wood Sandpiper showed well amd Green Sandpiper and Greenshank were also seen. At the patch my first Yellow-legged Gull of the year was on the beach. The moth trap has continued to be busy with another new macro species for the garden this morning: Dark Umber. Also my first Small Ranunculus for 8years. On Wednesday morning I had the 2nd record of a Small Elephant Hawk-moth-again a rather worn specimen. Yesterday there was a nice specimen of the Coronet.
Good weather for the moth trap continues, with another new macro for the garden list this morning: Kent Black Arches. Also my first Pale Oak Beauty for 7 years, and the first Broken-barred Carpet for 5. Also amomg the 48 species this morning was my 3rd Buff Footman.
Last Wednesday made the usual trip to Dungeness, where nearby at Greatstone I managed to see my 1st White-letter Hairstreaks for about 25 years. Since then the moth trap has ben very busy in this hot weather with a second Beautiful Hook-tip and Evergestis limbata, plus 2nd records too of Platytes alpinella, and Anania crocealis. Firsts for the year include Gold Triangle and The Coronet. Year list now stands at 240.
We've recently just passed half-way through the year so I thought I'd compare moth records with the previous 2 years. This year at the end of June I've reached 188 species, which is down on last year's 250 at the same stage, but better than 2016 when only 128 species had been counted. The hot weather has finally resulted in better numbers in the trap, with 34 species this morning, including Evergestis limbata which was a new species for the garden. Other new ones for the year included: Poplar Grey, Dot Moth, Chinese Character, and Buff-tip.