Monday, 18 May 2015

Quality time on the bog

I managed a hat-trick of visits to Morden Bog this weekend - the first, on Saturday, was a bit of a flyer, as I was just passing and didn't have long. I did a circuit of the Old Decoy Pond and heard just a single Tree Pipit singing - doing the same again the following day at more leisure produced a more respectable eleven singing males. The highlight of Saturday's visit, however, was a Hobby hawking dragonflies over the pond.
Back again early on Sunday morning a vocal but elusive Cuckoo finally gave itself up for a photo. Other heathland specialities were also in evidence - scratchy Dartfords and musical Woodlarks - while a Green Hairstreak was my first of the year. But for the apparent inability of numerous dog walkers to observe the polite signs asking them to keep their dogs under control, it was a pretty perfect place to spend some time.
Cuckoo, Morden Bog (#179)
Tree Pipit (#180)
Meadow Pipit with a Common Heath moth
A male Redstart was singing from a lofty perch
It was the last day of this month in 2014 when the famous Short-toed Eagle was found, shortly before its tour of southern heathlands took it to the New Forest and Ashdown Forest. So I found myself looking up in anticipation every time a crow went up to mob a raptor, but it was never for anything rarer than a Buzzard.
Male Stonechat
Stonechats look like they might have a good breeding year
Another young Stonechat
Green Hairstreak
And a late entry for the photo year list - a backlit Spotted Flycatcher on Portland last weekend (#181)

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