Thursday, 17 July 2008

Thursday 17th.July 2008

Definately not a butterfly/dragonfly morning . Went off doing other things , but just happened to come back via the Greensand Ridge . Still raining on and off , the driest places were under tins and felts . Didn't get too many opportunities for photos whilst doing survey , so turned a few tins near to the road . One particular one had 2 Grass Snakes under it on Tuesday , so tried it again today . 2 becomes 6- 3 Grass Snakes and 3 Slow Worms . Tommy Cooper would have loved that one . Grass Snakes made up much of the haul today . Do you remember that near metre long slough we found a few weeks ago ? Well , very close to where it was found was this animal . First time by I spooked him , but on the way back , I approached quietly and toothis at a distance of about 2 mtrs. His size can be judged by the Bramble leaves in front of him . If he wasn't the slough owner , he wasn't far off . I mentioned that some Slow Worms found
on the survey looked pregnant , well this is what I mean . The animal on the right , I would class as an average sized adult . I leave you to conclude on the one on the left . Not every tin/felt has a reptile beneath it , sometimes that nice dry 'des.res.' is occupied by other creatures . Ants seem
to like the conditions to use as a nursery , and are most put out when their roof is removed .
Rodents also find it desirable , usually vole or wood mice , but every now and again , an unusual one like this Pigmy Shrew moves in . But today was the day of the Grass Snake , this one , as you
can just make out has a blue film over his eyes , showing he is coming up to slough-change his skin. One Adder was found , I think it was the one photographed on Tuesday , but I'll post it
anyway . On the way back to the car , wlking through a meadow , I saw a flash of orange pass me by , a butterfly . I chased it down , to find a freshly emerged Small Copper sitting in the grass

in front of me . This will be the start of the second brood , the third will be late September into October . After photographing him , I went back to the car , and drove home quite contented.

Thought for the day , we lost the Large Copper from these Islands over 150 years ago , lets hope we don't lose this beautiful insect as well .

1 comment:

Steve said...

Fred - great pictures - that ~pygmy Shrew is brilliant. i see th occassional shrew but they move so fast!