Friday, 19 June 2015

Friday 19th. June 2015

Firstly , an identification of the larva that I thought was a Saw Fly on the end of the last post . It turns out to be the caterpillar of the strangely named Dingy Flat-bodied moth .
Now , a picture catch up on some recent outings :
An unusual Broad-leaved Helliborine on the Orchid Bank at High Elms , the variegation being caused by a virus in the soil .
Also on the Orchid Bank , a single Greater Butterfly-orchid . Identified as such by the non-parallel
and widely spaced pollinia of the flower , brown ended in the hood in this shot . The Lesser Butterfly-orchid has parallel and close pollinia .
A stop at Bough Beech Reservoir found the water level dropped , far too late to attract any migrant waders , but provided roost for Common Terns , a Mallard and a passing Great Crested Grebe .
Nearby , another probably queen Hornet , in flight this time ,
and a first Darter of the year , an immature Ruddy .
A frustrating hour or so at Long Lake , Sevenoaks Reserve , spent trying to photograph Downy Emerald in flight produced much for the recycle bin , but the odd usable shot too .
Fortunately on the odd occasion , it did come to rest .
Plenty of Red-eyed Damselflies around , and they were making sure that there would be plenty around next year too .
In the garden , this female , wonderfully named , Gasteruption jaculator , one of the Ichneumons that is reasonably easy to identify , was looking for a host into which it would lay her eggs .
Another fast moving and unidentified Ichneumon , was dragging what looked like  a spider , much heavier than itself , into a wood pile , no doubt to lay on and provide food for it's offspring .
Up on the Common , a single Bee Orchid , a first of the species this year for me ,
and lots of Common Cow-Wheat in the open glades .
At Spring Park Pond , 2/3 female Red Admirals were busy ovipositing ,
leaving their sigly layed eggs on the topsides of Common Nettle leaves ,
and a freshly emerged Speckled Wood gave an unusually posed photo opportunity .
A trip to Lullingstone Country Park produced my first Marbled White ( 1 of 3 ) of the year .
Also starting their flight period , Dark Green Fritillary , one of 6 recorded .
They spent most of the time in the ground vegetation , occasionally nectaring from their favoured Greater Knapweed .
Two Small Skipper were also first of the year sightings .
Two Cinnabar moths were also seen .
A female Painted Lady , ovipositing on Greater Knapweed , was the most unexpected sighting .
Arriving for the High Elms butterfly transect , this Ichneumon sp. was breakfasting on a small one .
The transect itself gets no better , with just 37 butterflies , Meadow Brown (26) , Common Blue (4) , Speckled Wood (2) , Green-veined White (2) and Large Skipper (1) going into the notebook . It's now nearly mid-Summer , when will the butterfly drought end ?
Most interesting thing found was this Horse Fly / Tabanus bromius .
How about that for a pair of eyes ?
Yesterday , I made a long anticipated trip to eastern Kent with fellow enthusiast Keith , but I will have to do another post , or this one will go on for ever .


Warren Baker said...

Had a look around 7 Oaks Reserve yesterday Greenie, didn't get to find any Downy Emeralds though :-(

Love those Horse fly eyes!!

Phil said...

Nice post Greenie. Glad you found some stuff to point your lens at. Everything seems a bit thin on the ground ( and the air) at the moment.