Saturday, 24 August 2019

A Couple of Ticks

Hertfordshires had a couple of good butterfly records this week. There has been a Queen of Spain Fritillary at Patmore Heath (not seen since Thursday) and the first Adonis Blues since 1959 at Therfield Heath.
After taking Mum shopping I popped over to Therfield-actually Church Hill by Fox Covert. It was warming up nicely and not too hot. Not many birds about, various miscellaneous ticks and tweets in the wood so I didn't linger and went straight for the hill. Mike Illett was there and had found a male Adonis but it wasn't flying, just sat down with its wings closed. It did fly a couple of times but proved hard to photograph.
We were joined by another enthusiast from Hitchin and the extra coverage meant that we eventually found several males and one or two females. Mike eventually got an open wing shot but I didn't and had to settle for an underwing pose with just a hint of black and white the upper wing edge.

Still plenty of Chalkhill Blues, some Common Blues and Brown Arguses, several Painted Ladies and a few Whites, plus singles of Small Tortoiseshell and Peacock.
Mike had been over to check the local Quail earlier but they weren't calling so I headed back to Stevenage and stopped off at Fairlands Lake. Its been pretty good for waders this year, most seen early morning around the main lake, but a Green Sandpiper had been found on the balancing pond and was still present when I got there. Fairlands used to be a regular haunt but has been neglected to some extent particularly with changes to my work routine, so it was a nice local tick for me.

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