Friday, 24 June 2016

Soggy Days in Bude

With 5 days off in a row again the plan was to head off to the caravan in Bude on Sunday 19th for a few days away but the weather was awful with virtually constant rain and so we stayed at home. Monday 20th and the forecast was for the rain to stop at lunchtime and so we too the plunge and headed off to Cornwall. It did indeed stop raining and it was warm and muggy and mostly cloudy during our time away but at least it didn't rain during the day time. It was wet and squelchy underfoot though and the water level at Maer Lake was very high but we had a pleasant time.

Caravan Sunset

With the high water level at Maer Lake the most exciting birds were a grey heron and a pair of teal along with moorhens and mallards while 2 chiffchaffs were busily singing away in the nearby hedgerows. More interesting were the birds offshore with a juvenile kittiwake being the highlight along with a juvenile gannet and a few Manx shearwaters, while 2 fulmars were flying around the cliffs and resting on the cliff ledges. On the clifftops a wheatear was a nice find but just 2 meadow brown and a male common blue were seen on the butterfly front.


A hare was a nice surprise at the caravan site, it looked like a young animal as it ran across the grass before hunkering down in an overgrown patch but it was soon spooked and ran off out of sight. I never saw it again but David disturbed it from cover the next morning as he wandered down to the shop to get the newspaper.

A sparrowhawk overhead at the campsite on a number of occasions caused much panic and noise from the swallows and a whitethroat was regularly heard singing with a second bird singing away along the footpath up to the cliffs.

I had the moth box out overnight on the 20th but had forgotten to bring my egg trays to put in the bottom of the trap and had to use screwed up newspaper instead. It worked well but meant some of the moths unfortunately flew off as I went through the sheets of paper.

I have wanted to have the moth box out for a while at home especially as it was National Moth Nights on 9th-11th June but work and poor overnight weather meant I wasn't able to. The theme for this year was hawkmoths and in my moth trap on the morning of June 21st I had 4 of them - a pristine eyed hawkmoth, 2 worn elephant hawkmoths and a very worn and weak privet hawkmoth.

 Eyed Hawkmoth

 Elephant Hawkmoth

Privet Hawkmoth

Also caught were a crescent dart, an ingrailed clay, common wainscot, buff ermine, white ermine, a lychnis, a brimstone moth, flame, flame shoulder, a snout, setaceous Hebrew character, a barred straw, lots of heart and dart and a large yellow underwing amongst others.

 Ingrailed Clay

Crescent Dart

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