Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Wednesday 26th. November 2014

Recent outings locally have not been very productive , but put together in one post hopefully are of interest . Starting with a sunny stop at Keston Ponds two weeks ago , finding Common Darters still
ovipositing , although well into November . As usual at this time of year , with other species becoming harder to find , fungi comes to the fore . I haven't been able to visit many of my favourite haunts , thus missing out on several of the rarer species , but on local walks , the following were found ;
Coral Spot Fungus / Nectria cinnabarina , found on dead wood , especially Sycamore ,
Clouded Agaric / Clitocybe nebularis , often found in rings around trees ,
Clavariadelphus junceus , a very easy to miss specimen , found in just one small area on West Wickham Common ,
Deceiver / Laccaria laccata , so called as it is very variable in appearance ,
and from the same family , Amethist deceiver / Laccaria amethystea , a common species , but also easily overlooked amongst the leaf litter ,
looking like a potatoe , Common Earth-ball / Sleroderma citrinum ,
4 Earth stars / Geastrum triplex ,
a nice stand of the chunky form of Honey Fungus / Armillaria mellea . As suggested , a slender form can also be found ,
and finally , the well named Hoof or Tinder Fungus / Fomes fomentarius . At the bottom of the shot , a hole drilled by a GSWoodpecker earlier in the year , but for some reason it wasn't used as a nest site . Recently , the light has been so bad , sadly as a female GSW has been a regular visitor to the
feeders . On this visit , she got into a squabble with a RRParakeet , but after a short spat , she left ,
leaving the RRP to gorge itself on the sunflower seeds . If , the light improves , I'll try and get better shots , along with the male Blackcap which Carol spotted feeding on the Callicarpa berries over the last couple of days . I did manage a visit to Sevenoaks Reserve last Monday but it didn't turn out particularly exciting . Not a sight or sound of a Siskin or Redpoll , lots of Common Snipe , way out on the furthest islands , 4 Mistle Thrush and a Green Woodpecker from Tyler Hide , a shout for a
White Wagtail posing outside Sutton Hide , a pair of Wigeon on the island from Willow Hide ,
and a reflective male Shoveler , making sure everything was in its place just out from the hide . I was hoping to get out today , but the weather put a stop to that idea from the start with drizzle and mist from daybreak and getting worse after lunch . So this morning I started sorting out this post , only to be called by Carol to what she thought originally to be a spill on the road , until it moved . I should add that Carol didn't have her glasses on . Anyway , I grabbed the camera and headed for the front bedroom to find a Sparrowhawk plucking a Collared Dove directly opposite . It was well in the road , about level with the offside of a parked car . I got a couple of shots through the window , then carefully open one . I got a few more shots before I heard a car approaching up the road , which must
have passed within 1/2 metres of the bird . After it passed , the bird surprisingly , was still there .
Shortly afterwards , it or another came down the road slowly and stopped alongside . It was only when the passenger got out that the Sprawk flew off with it's meal into a front garden , to be disturbed twice by passers by , before flying off again and out of sight . The light was appalling , but fortunately the F2.8 lens was on the camera and a few reasonable shots , in the conditions , were obtained . From what I can make out , it looks like a juvenile female , which probably explains how it nearly got run over . We heard youngsters calling for food from adults in the late Summer , from the local woods , so could well have been one of them .


Warren Baker said...

had a Sprawk making a right old mess like that in my garden Greenie, not seen one tackle a RR parakeet yet though!

John Phillips said...

Where's the photo of the car???? nice to see you today — John