BIRDING THE LUNE ESTUARY, THE UPLANDS OF BOWLAND AND BEYOND

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CLOUGHA PIKE. UNTIL RECENT YEARS THE BOWLAND STRONGHOLD FOR THE STONECHAT

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Where Are All The Butterflies?

Yesterday started cloudy and looked like it might rain as the tide was flowing, but in fact it made a nice sunny day just after noon with no more than a light breeze.


Greenshank/Oystercatcher. Pete Woodruff.

The 2 Common Tern adult were on the pontoon, there was some interesting behaviour on show, almost as if some courtship taking place, with vocals and wing drooping. Waders of note, up to 100 Lapwing present again, 6 Common Sandpiper, 4 Greenshank, 2 Black-tailed Godwit, and an Oystercatcher pair with young, 3 Cormorant were taking small fry like there was no tomorrow, 2 Little Grebe and 7 Tufted Duck

On the Lune Estuary, 2 Mediterranean Gull adult, and 2 Common Tern adult fishing.

Where are all the butterflies?

A trip down the A588 to Fluke Hall for a wander along the coastal path to Cockers Dyke produced evidence that in excess of 200 of 'em were along here, with the bulk attracted to the Ragwort, including at least 120 Large White, 60 Gatekeeper, 6 Small Copper, 6 Small Tortoiseshell, 4 Red Admiral, 3 Meadow Brown, and a Green-veined White.


Gatekeeper/Cinnabar Caterpillar On Ragwort. Pete Woodruff.

....and where are all the birds?    

Well, around 110 of 'em were at Cockers Dyke, with at least 70 Knot and 40 Grey Plover noted here, and at Fluke Hall c.60 Tree Sparrow seen.

Tern on the Lune Estuary.

A tern species was on the Lune Estuary yesterday, noticeably smaller than the Black-headed Gulls it was 'standing around' with on the mud on the far side of the river, too distant and too soon lost to view to try to get to grips with ID. In my view it was too far advanced into 1st-winter plumage to be one of the Conder Pool juvenile, certainly no 'gingery' look about the upperparts, no dark carpal bar seen, but with black hood and white forehead.

Perhaps Arctic Tern, but on size alone, I'm not prepared to rule out Little Tern....The one that got away!

3 comments:

Richard Pegler said...

There have been a lot of 'doom and gloom' stories about butterflies lately, Pete, but my experience this year seems to suggest that they have started bouncing back. It's no time to be complacent, however.

With my best wishes - - - - Richard

Pete Woodruff said...

Many thanks for looking in and making your comments Richard, make sure you read my next post.

Noushka said...

Hi Pete,
Thanks for dropping a much appreciated word on my blog recently, I have been away quite a bit: to Madagascar, Reunion and Mauritius in june and in Spain this month and had no time to post comments on friend's blogs!
A pity you're not finding the usual number of butterflies but let's hope that Richard is right and that they will be again more numerous although your sightings at Fluke Hall seem quite interesting.
Keep well and enjoy your outings :)