Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Wednesday 30th.June 2010

Two days strimming paths , stiles and gateways , up on the Greensand Ridge was sweaty work , but these areas , where mechanical means cannot be used has to be done manually , so we had to just get on with it .
I mentioned in my last post that I had more on the Kestrel nest , on the farm , just inside the entrance of RSPB Dungeness . It is the story of 'a sinister Cuckoo clock' plus more .Word has it that the juvenile which rose to fame on another Blogger's site a short while ago , now wants to be known as 'Phil' . Only trouble is , that there is another juvenile in the nest , and word has it that this one wants to be called 'I-want-to-be-called-Phil-too' . Only trouble is that the entry hole is only big enough for one of the juveniles at a time to stand in the front . 'Phil' and 'I-Want-to-be-called-Phil-too' , spend much of the time jostling each other for the best view from their vantage point , to see what is happening in the big world outside . That is until a distant call from Mum , turns sibling friendship into winner takes all . With her still calling , and the pair returning in shrieks , the whole farmyard is aware of what is happening .
In swoops Mum , with a small rodent in her bill , and basically tosses it into the entrance . Squabbling is heard from the nest , and Mum waits just to make sure that that is all that occurs . Then , with a backward flip , she is off , to find the next meal for her ever hungry family .
It probably won't happen many more times at the nest , as 'Phil' and 'I-want-to-be-called-Phil-too' look as if they will be out in that big world very soo now .
Last night , after volunteering , I had a meeting on the London Wildlife Trust site a Salt Box Hill , with the Grazing Officer , regarding the continued presence of the two Dartmoor ponies on the site . Despite my opinion regarding the detrimental effect on the butterflies that are found on the site , particularly Marbled Whites , I was told that the horses will remain on site for at least another month , as part of the Natural England demand that either the site makes forward progress as chalk grassland , or LWT will loose the designation of the site being a Site of Special Scientific Interest , which I am amazed that it presently holds . My opinion against Natural England , no chance .Before the meeting , I had a quick look at the unfenced area , and found the first two Marbled Whites that I have recorded this year . Of interest , although called a White , it is in fact a black butterfly , with white markings . I also recorded 15 Ringlet , 1 Common Blue , 3 Meadow Brown and 3 Large Skipper , all females , identified by the lack of the prominent dark line , sex brand , on the forewing . Whilst walking through the fenced section with the Grazing Officer , just a few Ringlet and Meadow Brown , plus a fly through Red Admiral , no sign of a Marbled White .
And finally , one for Dean . This was the best I could manage of this small , active moth . With many thanks to Dean/DDD , now identified as Agapeta hamana .
And definitely finally , in answer to Steve/Kingsdown's question , no I didn't see the Purple Heron , when I reached the viewing mound , there were so many people and gear around , and the RSPB warden telling everyone that there were very good views - yesterday , I left them to it and found my own space on the site .


Warren Baker said...

whats the mother Kestrel called - philys?

Greenie said...

Warren ,
A very philosophical comment indeed .

Phil said...

Greenie. Some time back I posted a story about a Sparrowhawk which turned bad and ended up killing a local Sparrow. You said I might need a therapist I believe...............If you e mail me I'll give you his number!

Anonymous said...

They have imported Dartmoor ponies onto the downs here too, a bit further west. One followed me half the way home a while back, snuffling around my shoulder bag - after my sandwiches I reckon.

Wilma said...

Wonderful series of the kestrel family, complete with delightful commentary, Greenie. :-) The marbled white photo definitely illustrates that it is black with white markings.


Anonymous said...

Hi Greenie, your micro is Agapeta hamana. The intensity of the brown markings can vary quite a bit.

ShySongbird said...

Love the off the wall (or should I say off the cuckoo clock) humour here Greenie, I'm wondering if midsummer madness has set in and turned you a little cuckoo :)

Great photos of the 'Phils' and a lovely one of the Marbled White too. A shame you didn't get anywhere at the meeting but at least you got your opinion across!

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