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Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Shropshire Birds and Butterflies

Well it's that time of year when the birds dry up (except for Mega Scoters that I can't reach!) and the insects come out (and bite me to death!) so this write up concentrates on both. I had a Saturday free so joined up with Jim Almond and Rob Stokes to try and locate some butterflies that I've never seen in the county. I was extremely jealous as both have fantastic macro lens' (want one!) but I thought I'd make the most of my set up and still managed to get some shots.

First stop was to see Wood White. This is probably on the edge of their range but once at the site (secret I'm afraid) we quickly got onto butterlies and a damselfly sp. Large Skipper, Common Blue and then the Wood White. The latter wouldn't keep still, but eventually it landed half way up a bank and I had to laugh as both the macro guys climbed up and slipped down again whilst trying to get ultra close.

Common Blue.

Wood White.

Rob da bank!

So mission accomplished we now had another rarity in our sights and headed toward a well known hill range. The weather that day had been variable with a mix of showers and sunshine. At our new venue we headed along the track toward a path of marsh that was, unbeknown to me , 2.5km away. This was not helped by having to shelter below trees to keep the camera equipment out of the rain. This did, however, allow me to notice this little beauty that was not used to humans it seemed.

Baby Common Redstart.

So on we trudged and to be honest my enthusiasm waned but eventually Rob (who had zoomed on ahead) called us both on the mobile and with a bit of shouting put us onto a patch of Marsh that held our quarry, Small Pearl Bordered Fritillary.
Small Pearl Bordered Fritillary (underwing)

Eventually the sun came out and we got the upper wing shots we were after......

So elated happy bunnies we were and headed back to the car and onward to collect the car from Venus Pools. At VP we decided to take a look out the hide and whilst my partners went about trying to take Macro photo's of a weird wood wasp, on the hide window, I decided to take my chance at getting the best shot of a Grey Heron I have done so far.....

A cracking end to the day.

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