The morning did not go quite according to plan and so via a
wiggly coastal town road I ended up parked up at Bockhill on top of the White
Cliffs. The car park was suspiciously empty
but I suspect that the howling westerly wind may have had to do with peoples
reluctance to venture to the coast.
It was not actually cold but compared to a few days ago it
would certainly have been described as bracing.
I knew that I was too early for the proper summer butterflies, being in between
broods, but still had a pleasant walk in both directions. The view towards St Margarets and its
lighthouse was superb and brought back memories of the breeding colony of
summer Marsh Warblers in the nettle and willowherb hollows, of seeing
Peregrines and raven backs on the chalk and of an Alpine Accentor grovelling
around a field edge for a few minutes way back on the 6th May 2000.
|St Margarets lighthouse|
There were no tumbling corvids or stooping falcons this
time; just some windblown Herring Gulls and speedy windsurfers way below.
I spooked a couple of tatty Marbled Whites from the flowers
as I walked back and headed for the other side and the view north back up to
the cliffs at Ramsgate in the distance.
|Pyramidal Orchids (again!)|
|Looking towards Kingsdown - a windblown bonus Meadow Pipit |
There was quite a bit of Wild Carrot, clumps of Scabious and Greater
Knapweed and Kidney Vetch and I tried hard to get pictures of the insects that
were concentrating on the carrot heads.
There were many of what looked like a small skinny very
spiky Rhinophoridae, several Sphaerophoria scripta, Scaeva pyrastri, Eristalis tenax and nemorum, a
few meaty Flesh Flies and a couple of interesting wasps whose identity I have
|Wild Carrot |
Meadow Pipits and Skylarks sang and one of the former gave
up trying to parachute and sang hunkered down on his post where I noticed that
he had a Flower Piercer bill!
Yellowhammers were somewhere beyond the poppy field and the
song was getting blown across as I battled my way back to the car.
Lunch was had at Oare Marshes followed by a chat with a
Kentish Rainham regular while watching summer plumaged Black-tailed Godwits and
Avocets in the shallows. A first summer Little Gull was cute but no substitute
for the absent Bonaparte’s Gull.
|Black-tailed Godwit and Common Tern|
|Black-tailed Godwits, Black-headed and Little Gull|
|Little Egret and Swifts|
A young male Marsh Harrier was having no trouble hunting
into the ever stiffening wind and two Yellow Wagtails blew over as I walked
down to the river where there was quite literally nothing on the mud at all so
I amused myself with taking pictures of a large yacht leaning heavily as it
tacked up the Swale.
|Happy gulls after a fishing boat cast offs|
Time for home and an afternoon kip.
Was it the pilot or the skylark with the flower pierced bill? Your text suggests skylark but the photos say pipit...ReplyDelete
cheers! my typo!Delete