25 July, 2012

Moths

The weathers a hell of a lot better, and without further ado, here are some garden moths to celebrate with...

Small Ranunculus...


Dark Sword-grass...


Leopard Moth...

Coronet...


Hoary Footman...


White-point...


Recurvaria nanella...


Eudemis profundana...

Gypsonoma oppressana...

Enarmonia formosana...


Lozotaeniodes formosanus...


Just let this be a warning. Whenever I have nothing to blog about, I'm just going to throw moths at you... like now.

01 July, 2012

A Hoot of a Time in Bushy Park

I've just spent most of this evening creeping through Bushy Park with a camera (what better way to spend a Saturday night?), in the hope of catching up with a few night-dwelling critters. I was looking in particular for Owls, after counting double figures of Little Owl in the Park last Wednesday whilst catching (more like attempting and failing to catch) moths.

This time round, I'd come armed with a camera, and unlike on the two other brief occasions that I've seen Little Owl in the Park (both in daylight, and both flying in the opposite direction) it was nice to finally have a proper encounter with one, as it flew from perch to perch, and at one point started hunting insects between the Lime trees along the Avenue...


Fifteen minutes (and two Little Owls) later, a Tawny Owl started calling from high in an oak by the gated entrance to the Woodland Gardens. I'd heard it in the exact same spot last Wednesday, so this must be a regular hang out for the bird. Here's a bad sound recording of its distinctive, but slightly odd call...

video

After a while of calling, a second bird appeared in an oak directly above me to investigate, and perched gloriously for a good five minutes, before starting a calling competition with the original bird. Words cannot describe the feeling of  watching this bird, in twilight, in the middle of the woods. Sheer class...


To top off a memorable evening, a further 3 Tawnies were making weird high-pitched calls to each other in a nearby Plantation, and once again, perched completely out in the open. Would have made a great shot for anyone with a night-vision camera...?


You'll need to use your imagination a bit to hear it, but I did manage to grab a recording of the birds calling to each other. It was a weird, raspy sound. Never heard anything quite like it...

video

A truly memorable night. It's always a priviledge to see great birds, but there's just something else about Owls.