My blog is mostly about wildlife, particularly birds, walking, days out, all growing things and anything else that comes to mind.
To view pictures in larger format, just click on any picture for the picture gallery....

Sunday, 14 June 2009

A Grand day

This morning we had homework to do. Grandson J did the clever stuff - Maths - and I had the easy bit - clearing out blanket weed from the pond. Well - I did do some but then got side-tracked watching the birds in the garden.

I still have families of Great and Blue Tits visiting. Today I had two Greenfinch youngsters, a visit from a Nuthatch (lovely) and, being a warm day, a Banded Demoisoille flew across the pond - great surprise!

When I got back to looking at the pond, the wildlife there was interesting too.
Frogs (three in all) were using the Lily leaves as sunshades from the warm sun.

Blue and Large Red Damselflies flitted busily about looking for an egg-laying site.

This hover fly (I think?) was one of about four that stopped on the lily leaves to drink

And this wonderful moth landed on something J was using, in the garden.
(This picture really benefits from being enlarged by clicking on it - its markings are interesting)
If anyone can identify this, I would be grateful. I can't find it in my rather limited moth book!)

Maurice has kindly suggested that this is a "Crambus lathoniellus" moth and I'm inclined to agree with him based on the visual comparison, the time of year when found, and the location - the grass in my back garden!

Homework was done and dusted so after an early lunch we headed off for the London Wetland Centre at Barnes.

Birds were scarce and what was about was quiet in the afternoon sun.
Orchids abounded

Grey Herons everywhere but this one was walking about and fishing

Coots seem to be everywhere you look these days and this Mother and Child were no exception

A Black Tailed Skimmer landed on the path in front of us so I grabbed a quick shot.
(EDIT: I'd originally identified this as a Broad Bodied Chaser and thanks to Maurice for his correction. It's really obvious when you look at the book and ID it correctly! Thanks Maurice :)

A female mallard - the markings always delight me, was sunning herself

with her partner next to her

These two captive cranes came through the enclosure to have a drink. There are now two areas where these are and these are the most recent additions.

And sculptures were everywhere it seemed. All of the following have been made from recycled materials.

Entitled "The Twitcher"

"Redshank" made from various bits and ieces including Venetian Blinds!

"Cycling fish" fashioned from bicycles and cogs

Not sure what this was made from!

and this bird - all plastic bags and bicycle wheel rims!

A "Swanbrella" made from white plastic bags and an umbrella handle!

and finally - a Grey Heron

Another lovely day in the sun. And tomorrow - is Monday!


Cheryl said...

Your photographs are just stunning....I do love to browse through is great, I do love the fox.....

The moth....I am not too sure but could it be a mullein moth.......

Randy Emmitt said...

Enjoyed your dragons and damselflies. The garden art was indeed a fun treat too!

The Early Birder said...

Interesting sculptures Tricia, but how the heck do you catch fish on a bike!

Warren Baker said...

This time of year brings out the best in pond life Tricia. I had a Juv. Grass snake in mine today!

mick said...

I love the photos of the frogs in the pond - also the heron stalking through the water. You certainly fill your days with activity!

Tricia said...

Cheryl - thank you very much. And you could well be right with Mullein Moth.

Randy - Thanks and the sculptures were fun.

Frank - The answer to your question is multi-choice:

a) with difficulty
b) with a hot rod
c) by peddling very fast

Warren - well I'm glad it was in your pond and not mine Snakes and I are not comfortable together - at least I'm not comfortable with snakes - don't know how they feel about me though Lol.

Tricia said...

Mick - they are rather cute. The Heron did finally catch a fish but I missed it on camera. I like/need to keep occupied :D

Chris said...

Hi Tricia,
Wow, nice day you got! I love the sculpture, especially the fish biking, they are gorgeous!!! Very cool message, I love it.. You got some nice time it seems.

NatureStop said...

The frogs in the pond using the waterlilies as shades are cute:)Love the sculptures specially the cycling fish.Thanks for sharing.Really enjoyed your post.

holdingmoments said...

How nice to have a Nuthatch visit the garden Tricia. Great acrobats in the trees.
Damsels too; I've only had hoverflies so far. :)
Great selection of pictures again, but the sculptures really are good.
Love The Twitcher lol
Really good use of old cast offs.

Old Wom Tigley said...

Hi Tricia
Another delightful set of pictures.. as you know I love all things that nature provides us... but today I really liked the sculptures. The fish on bikes are stunning.
Great Post

Billy said...

Hi Tricia,

Looks like you had a great day! Just a suggestion for the mystery insect... maybe a Caddisfly- Im probably totally wrong! Dont think its a Mullein moth though


Anonymous said...


Your orchids look like hybrids of Common Spotted and Marsh orchids (Need a sharp picture to be sure).
Your moth is one of the small "grass" moths. Without a side-on view of the markings it is difficult to say which one.Berkshire Moths have a very good guide to these moths on their website.



Tricia said...

Chris - yes had a great time and thanks.

NatureStop - glad you enjoyed the post; the frogs were rather tucked-up under their "sunshades"

Keith - I've heard the Nuthatch around since but yet to see it at the feeder again. They're not very frequent visitors here.

I've had lots of damsels but so far no dragons from the ponds :(

Tom - thank you. The sculptures were fun and made good decorative use of discarded bits and pieces!

Billy - I had a look at Caddisfly but it wasn't that either. Thanks for your help though.

Hi Maurice - Thank you so much for all your help with IDing plants and moths. I took the Orchid pics with my 100-400 lens which is really far too soft for plants.

I've googled "grass" moths (and looked at your suggested site) and the closest I can get to is Pearl Banded Grass Veneer - this is a whole new ball game for me so your help is much appreciated. I didn't know there were so many and must admit I'm still not sure.

Anonymous said...

Hi again,

I'm newish to mothing, been at at it for about 3 years, lots to learn.

I'm not sure it is a Pearl Band Grass Veneer. This moth is on the wing July onwards and is local to the North, Norfolk and the South West. Looks more like a Crambus lathoniellus. So the book says!!!

The Broad-bodied Chaser looks more like a Black-tailed Skimmer.



oldcrow61 said...

Your pictures are wonderful. I do like some of those sculptures.

Tricia said...

Hello again Maurice. I'm grateful once again for your ID help and have now updated my blog appropriately. I'd no idea about all these different moths so a learning curve has now begun.

The dragonfly is obvious and I should have ID'd this correctly by looking more closely.

OC - thank you! Given there weren't many birds to find it was great to come across these unexpected sculptures. :D

Janine said...

The red flower sculpture is of a tropical bloom that smells like carrion. Good thing it wasnt genuine!

ShySongbird said...

I'm all behind again but I love all the photos on this post. For a change though the ones which caught my eye the most were the sculptures, they are so very creative, did you model for the 'Twitcher' Tricia? ;)
I thought they were all wonderful! I love that sort of thing.

Tricia said...

Hi J and no - I didn't model for the Twitcher (or any of the other sculptures come to that Lol)

It was fascinating to find them all and see what they were made of!

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