Monday, 15 September 2014

A few toadstools from southern Scotland

Shaggy inkcaps.

Fly agarics.

Boletus sp.

Saturday, 13 September 2014

Martin Mere

Curlew sandpiper 5
Little stint 2
Ruff 70
Dunlin 5
Pink footed goose 500+
Marsh harrier 1
Kingfisher 1

No sign of yesterdays pec sand, but it has apparently been elusive. Nice to see a good selection of waders and the returning pink feet.

Eccleston Mere

Tufted duck 17
Coot 140
Kingfisher 1
Mute swan 6 (adult male & 5 cygnets)
Chiffchaff 1 Singing

Very quiet again.

Friday, 12 September 2014

Burton Mere Wetlands (Inner Marsh Farm hide)

Red-necked phalarope 1 juv
Cattle egret 1
Curlew sandpiper 1
Little stint 2
Spotted redshank 14
Ruff 7
Snipe 10
Black-tailed godwit 20
Pintail 50
Little egret 7
Wigeon 100
Teal 500

Year: 274 (Curlew sandpiper)

Curlew sandpiper added to the list at last, but to be honest the year list has shuddered to a halt recently, to such an extent that I now no longer expect to get to 300. It's not surprising really when you look at the great list of birds from Inner Marsh Farm today and then realise that only one of them was a  year tick.

Red-necked phalarope with teal.

Appleton Reservoir, Warrington

Gadwall 30
Shoveler 5
Teal 2
Tufted duck 15
Mute swan 2 ads

Houghton Green Flash, Winwick

Wigeon 5
Teal 1
Mute swan 2 ads
Canada goose 2
Little grebe 3

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Appleton reservoir, Warrington

Shoveler 4
Gadwall 8
Tufted duck 14
Mute swan 2 adults
Buzzard 2

Eccleston mere

Tufted duck 17
Coot 140
Kingfisher 1
Mute swan 6 (ad & 5 cygnets)
Treecreeper 2

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Blacktoft Sands, Goole

Yellow wagtail 40 on the grazing marsh

Waders including redshanks, little ringed plover (2), black-tailed godwits and snipe. No sign of this mornings red-necked phalarope.

 Brown hare

Houghton Green Flash, Winwick

Black necked grebe 1
Wigeon 2
Gadwall 1
Tufted duck 15
Little grebe 2

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Eccleston Mere

Willow tit 1
Gadwall 3
Mute swan 7 (adult male with 5 cygnets and adult female being driven off by male)
Coot 140
Great spotted woodpecker 2
Swallow 30
House martin 20

Appleton Reservoir, Warrington

Cuckoo 1
Raven 2
Gadwall 37
Shoveler 5
Tufted duck 14
Great crested grebe inc. pair with 2 chicks on their back.
Mute swan 2 ads

My first ever September cuckoo, and my latest by 10 days.

Monday, 8 September 2014

Appleton Reservoir, Warrington

Gadwall 12

The Burren

Lough Gealain, part lough and part turlough.

The neolithic burial tomb Poulnabrone Dolmen.

 Fields of Devil's-bit scabious

Grass of Parnassus


 Mountain Avens

 Rosettes of mountain everlasting (cat's ear).

O'Kelly's spotted orchid.

 Shrubby cinquefoil.

Shrubby cinquefoil with devil's-bit scabious.

Sea plantain

Eyebright. I keep trying to turn this into Irish eyebright, but the leaves don't look right to me. There was loads of Irish eyebright in flower but I somehow managed to miss photographing any classic examples! Very frustrating. I think this probably is Irish eyebright however.

Black Head.

Rusty Back fern.

Lough Bunny.

A Lusitanian plant on the Dingle Peninsula, Kerry

This is one of the most interesting and exciting plants we found on the holiday. It's a butterwort, but the leaves are very big (at least 10cm rosette diameter) and quite pale. From the size of the leaves alone, I think that it has to be large-flowered butterwort, which I've seen before in the Pyrenees but which in the British Isles grows only in South West Ireland, and mainly in Kerry, where it's not uncommon in the correct habitat. This individual was growing at the side of the road on a high mountain pass just above Dingle town.

However, it's main interest is that it belongs to a unique group of plants known as the Lusitanian flora. This is a group of Mediterranean plants native to Ireland but mainly absent from Britain that come originally from the Iberian Peninsula. I've known about the Lusitanian flora for many years, and it was a real thrill to actually find one for myself!

Dingle Peninsula.

From the Holyhead to Dublin Ferry

Arctic Skua.


Manx shearwaters.

Incredible structural variation. The bird above looks bulkier, bull necked and large headed compared to the more streamline bird below.

Is it a sooty? No just another Manxie.

Miscellaneous photos from Ireland

Bar-tailed godwit. Not completely in focus but I like this picture.

Cliffs of Moher, County Clare

Inish More, Aran Islands

The Plassey shipwreck, Aran Islands. You may recognise this from the opening sequence of Father Ted!

 Rossbeigh Strand.

Ring of Kerry.

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Malltreath, Anglesey

Little egret 4
Redshank 50
Curlew 30