Birds, Leps, Observations & Generalities - the images and ramblings of Mark Skevington. Sometimes.

Friday, 1 January 2021

SP5595ish - First Foray

Today dawned bright and early. For some I'm sure at least; for me there was no intention of getting up at the crack of dawn as an evening on large whiskies and the constraint of a bi-daily visit from the District Nurse meant I was going nowhere early anyway. By the time I looked out into the garden, it was evident that the clear cold skies that prevailed into the night at the end of 2020 had been replaced by dank grey clag. I whiled away some time watching the garden feeders, and after the nurse had been I got ready to head out for a walk down the lane. I was not intending too go all out crawling through the undergrowth - I can't anyway as I'm still a physically restricted with regards to bending over (getting my boots on and laced up without help was a milestone!). I had my bins, P900, phone and dictaphone.

It remained steadfastly grey, in fact the conditions only worsened whilst I was out for a couple of hours. Before hitting the lane, I'd already picked up a fair number of plants heading out of the estate including some obvious escapes: Mahonia, Lesser Periwinkle, Sowbread, Buddleija, Spotted Medick and these ....

Purple Toadflax

Spotted Dead-nettle

Italian Lords-and-Ladies

In total I managed to record a modest 46 vascular plants. This includes trees, plants identifiable from their leaves or fruit and a handful of flowering plants. I clearly saw a lot more than 46 species; there are plenty to come as they develop and I can spend more time focussing on them.

I completely ignored any invertebrate life. Between the garden and walking about I saw 25 bird species and 1 mammal (the resident garden Squirrels). There were no avian surprises, and the light was shocking but that didn't stop me pointing the camera at a few to garner some rubbish photos.

Common Buzzard

Fieldfare - at least 60 feeding across a couple of fields

Redwing - only around 10 of these with Fieldfare

Common Gull - with camera pointing through a hedge giving the weird vignetting effect

With 4 fungi, 2 lichens and a moss noted, I've ended up on 79sp. - not bad for a couple of hours in dull and uninspiring conditions. By the time I was heading back up the lane to home a steady drizzle had set in.


Gibster said...

And so it begins...
Happy New Year to ya buddy.

Skev said...

And to you too. How did your post-midnight spider and fly foray go??