Many lovely summery things!

Sometimes these things are so easy to write they essentially write themselves and this blog is one of those.

There is some great stuff out there to see and once again I can only urge you to go and see and enjoy it as much as you can.

The last blog was a bit of a tribute to the Yellowhammer and they are still here singing away.

Yellowhammer (Emberiza citronella).

This has also been a good year for Nightingales and they were very loud.

A little while ago now but we were lucky enough to be enjoying a family of Song Thrushes on the lawn, with a total of 3 chicks being fed by both parents.

Baby Song Thrush with parent.

Another very local success, aside from the masses of Early Purple Orchids that were glowing in the woodlands and verges, is a Common Spotted Orchid that is a first for our garden and is just on the verge of coming into flower.

Common Spotted Orchid

Here’s a photo of it emerging and it’s a bit easier to see how this orchid gets its name.

Common Spotted Orchid emerging

Even closer, again, and proving that wildlife can pop up anywhere was this Azure Damselfly that I found on the ceiling of the sitting room. I did then find one in its more traditional home…outside…a few days later.

Indoor Azure Damselfly

The only negative I will mention here is that I have a tetrad (2km2 square) to monitor how many and successfully Cetti’s Warblers breed in Twineham and I was very optimistic considering there was a singing male along the river Adur near Twineham Place Farm last year, but not this year seemingly…or yet – let’s be optimistic!

There did, however seem to be everything else and you know you’re off to a good start when you go looking for a 4-leafed clover and find a 5-leafed clover instead!

5 leafed clover

This is now pressed in a book and my only challenge now is to remember which book it’s in…

Next came a bit of a little gem and its notoriety is only matched by the awfulness of the photo.  Here it is:

Fuzzy Brown Argus

Here’s a better one:

Brown Argus, Dave Hill.

It’s a Brown Argus butterfly and this is generally well distributed throughout Sussex although it does tend to stick to chalk grassland. The UK distribution is the south / south east to central England and we have one here!

Flying around with the Brown Argus was this beauty, a Painted Lady.

Painted Lady

Now, these things have a life cycle that you wouldn’t believe and I’m going to do my best to explain it.

So, at the beginning of the year, Painted Lady’s hatch and develop in north Africa. That first generation with then fly north into Europe, lay eggs which hatch into caterpillars and then metamorphose into adult butterflies in the chrysalis, but these adult butterflies only live for a fortnight. The adult butterflies then fly a bit further north again and the second generation happens.

What this means is that most of the adult Painted Ladies we see might be the 3rd or 4th generation of that year alone and another generation of that year alone and will go as far north as the Arctic Circle and some will then make the whole trip back to north Africa.

There are some super animals out there and this is one of them.

That was such a great day that I went out again the next day to see what I could find. The highlight was quite a lot of Chub which were hanging around a bridge and it’s handy there aren’t many people around here as I could lay on my stomach on this bridge, which is on a footpath I should add, and take photos of these Chub.

Chub

A forward facing Chub

I was there for so long and so quiet that a Reed Warbler came to see what I was up to and I also saw one smallish Chub swim under me very quickly followed by what I realised was a small Pike going like a rocket for this Chub and all I heard was a final splash, so who knows what happened.

This was all topped off back at home again with this very charismatic Large Black Slug!

Large Black Slug oozing slimy personality!

So, in a nutshell, there is some great things to see outside and they are there waiting to be seen!

Tom.

3 thoughts on “Many lovely summery things!

  1. Taylor says:

    Let’s hope a 5 leaf clover is extra good luck for Lambs ( and extra bad luck for Mayfields) !

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