Sunday, 9 December 2018

St Andrews Park!

We did a winter walk in the park this morning and saw or heard the following birds:
Goldcrest
Blue Tit
Great Tit
Goldfinch
Redwing
Starling
Blackbird
Woodpigeon
Herring Gull
Black-headed Gull
Pied Wagtail
Dunnock
Robin
Jay
Feral Pigeon
Carrion Crow
Magpie
Pied Wagtail
Non-bird interest was provided by some nice Silverleaf fungus on a dead tree and another as yet unidentified fungus. There were also leafmines on Holm Oak leaves created by the moth Stigmella suberivora.  
Unidentified fungus

Stigmella suberivora

Silverleaf fungus

Sunday, 2 December 2018

St Andrews Park!

What started as a quick walk through the park on the way to the shops ended up as an hour-long birdwatch despite the drizzle. I was delighted to see a couple of Redwings around - sightings of these winter visitors from Scandinavia are virtually guaranteed in the park these days. Also several Blackbirds, a couple of female Chaffinches, many Goldfinches, a Jay, about 8 Long-tailed Tits, a couple of Blue Tits, a Goldcrest, 4 or 5 Herring Gulls, lots of Woodpigeons, a couple of Robins and a calling Dunnock.
Chaffinch

Long-tailed Tit

Redwing

Woodpigeon
A spider in my kitchen looks like it's another Labulla thoracica which I had in the flat a few weeks ago. UPDATE: apparently the spider is probably one of the money spiders called Lepthyphantes.
Lepthyphantes

Monday, 26 November 2018

Montpelier Park!

Lots of common bird activity this morning with singing Robin and Wren, feeding Great and Blue Tits, calling Dunnocks and several Blackbirds, a Collared Dove, 3 Woodpigeons and 5 Magpies. Three or four Grey Squirrels were very active around the park.
Grey Squirrel

Wren


Saturday, 17 November 2018

St Andrews Park!

It was a lovely sunny morning for a stroll around the park. Highlights were a calling Great Spotted Woodpecker, several Goldfinches, a Black-headed Gull and several Herring Gulls and a Pied Wagtail. About 5 Marmalade Hoverflies were basking on leaves near the pond but a rather ill-looking Common Wasp was crawling along the path.
Pied Wagtail

Common Wasp

A goose-stepping Black-headed Gull

Marmalade Hoverfly

Thursday, 15 November 2018

Montpelier Park!

Not much to report this morning apart from about 10 Long-tailed Tits and a few Blue Tits, a female Chaffinch, 2 Blackbirds, 7 Magpies, a Woodpigeon and singing Wren and Robin.

Tuesday, 13 November 2018

St Pauls Park!

This morning there was plenty of common bird action with 2 Dunnocks, a couple of Woodpigeons, 3 Robins, 2 Goldfinches, a couple of Blue Tits, 2 Herring Gulls and 3 Magpies.
Dunnock

Herring Gull

Magpie

Robin

Huge surprise on the insect front with a Twin-spot Centurion soldierfly basking on a leaf. Although this is an autumn species I've never seen them this late in the year!
Twin-spot Centurion

Saturday, 10 November 2018

New spider for the patch!

I was just leaving home this morning and I noticed a small spider on the wall near the front door. I photographed it and tried to ID it this afternoon but gave up so I put it on the Facebook spider group and lo and behold it's a spider called Labulla thoracica. My fieldguide says it is common and widespread and likes shady banks and woodland. This one is a male - it has huge palps!

Thursday, 1 November 2018

St Pauls Park!

It's been a while since I popped into the park, and this morning I was rewarded with impressive numbers of Long-tailed Tits - between 10 and 15 - to keep me occupied with smaller numbers of Blue and Great Tits feeding in the trees. Also a calling Dunnock, a Herring Gull, a couple of Blackbirds and a singing Robin.
Great Tit

Blackbird

Long-tailed Tit

Wednesday, 31 October 2018

Montpelier Park!

Little to report this morning apart from a couple of female Chaffinches (the first for quite a while - they seem to be autumn/winter visitors to the patch these days), a couple of Long-tailed Tits, a Blue Tit, 2 Robins, a singing Wren, a Blackbird and a few Magpies.

Sunday, 28 October 2018

St Andrews Park!

Not too much to report on a sunny but cold morning - just a Jay flying across the park, a Wren calling, a couple of Blue Tits and a Blackbird. Near the pond 2 or 3 Marmalade Hoverflies were basking.


Wednesday, 17 October 2018

Spiders!

While at the station this morning waiting for my (delayed) train I thought I'd better check for spiders along the wall. I only had my phone camera so snapped a House Spider and a Garden Spider. The latter behaved very oddly, playing 'dead' when I prodded her then descending quickly on the end of a silk thread.
House Spider

Garden Spider


Wednesday, 10 October 2018

Sparrowhawk!

A Sparrowhawk flew high but purposefully over Montpelier Station this morning. Nearby a Marmalade Hoverfly was feeding on the Ivy.

Tuesday, 9 October 2018

Out and About!

This morning I had a look around the park - the early sunshine produced a Syrphus hoverfly and a couple of Harlequin Ladybirds. Nearby at the station approach there were a couple of Ivy Bees, several Eristalis tenax hoverflies, a Green Shieldbug and another Syrphus hoverfly.
Syrphus


Harlequins

Eristalis tenax


Ivy Bee

Green Shieldbug

This evening on the way home there were about 20 Starlings on the church at Portland Square, though flighty.
Starlings

Tuesday, 2 October 2018

Heron!

A Grey Heron flapped low over the station this morning heading in the direction of the arches. I think it's the first I've seen on the patch this year and always a slightly bizarre sight! Also at the station some Michaelmas Daisies still in flower on the tracks and several Zygiella x-notata spiders along the wall.




Sunday, 30 September 2018

Frogs!

In St Andrews Park this morning there were still lots of tadpoles and at least one froglet in the pond.


Thursday, 27 September 2018

Red Admiral!

A Red Admiral was nectaring on Ivy flowers near the station this morning. Always nice to see, it seems to have been a good year for them.

Nothing exciting in nearby Montpelier Park, just a singing Great Tit, a Wren, singing Robin and 4 or 5 Blackbirds.

Tuesday, 25 September 2018

Fox and Ravens!

This morning at the station a Fox showing well and was a lot less skittish than usual. There were two Ravens on the TV mast (Harry saw 10 in St Werburghs on Sunday!) and there were a couple of Great Tits, a Robin and a Dunnock nearby. An Erisatlis tenax hoverfly was feeding on Ivy.

Fox


Ravens
Eristalis tenax

Wednesday, 19 September 2018

Ivy Bees!

This morning near the station it was all happening with several Ivy Bees - my first of the year - along with a couple of Honey Bees, a Common Wasp, a Dock-leaf Bug and an Eristalis pertinax hoverfly.

Ivy Bees

Honey Bee

Common Wasp

Eristalis tenax

Dock-leaf Bug