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8:33AM

Rye Harbour Moths

At last! After a run of bad weather and a trap which steadfastly refused to work after its winter rest, last night was my first moth trapping night of 2018! A total of 22 individuals of nine species was mainly made up of small quaker and common quaker, with a couple each of early grey and Hebrew character and singles of mullein, clouded drab, double-striped pug, chocolate-tip and the micro Diurnea fagella (below). This is apparently a common spring species though I don't get it here very often. This individual is immediately identifiable as a male as the female is wingless.

6:43AM

From the Clifftop

 A largely gloomy day yesterday, no seawatching !  However the moth trap held 10 species, including Yellow Horned, a not uncommon species , but only the second one I've ever caught, the first being in 2007 just after we moved to Fairlight. The antennae that give the moth its name can be hidden at rest. Also new for the year were Grey Shoulder-Knot and Oak Nycteoline. 15 species for 2018.

While I was looking at these a Hawfinch flew west calling, there was one at Dungeness too, both unusual records, a Blackcap was singing in the garden later.

Nice to see the Stilts....

10:52AM

Hastings Country Park Events

The Friends of Hastings Country Park Nature Reserve invite you to join them for the following events:

Bursting into Bud

A Springtime ramble to Fairlight Glen led by national tree expert, Dr Owen Johnson, identifying various trees and shrubs along the way.

Date: Saturday 14th April - 10.30am to 12.30pm

Meet: Fairlight Road Picnic Site Car Park (A parking charge applies)

Cost: £4, or free to Friends of HCPNR

N.B. This walk may be muddy so please wear suitable footwear. Regret no dogs.

Swifts - The Sight and Sound of Summer

A talk by Sussex Ornithological Society's Swift Champion, Ray Jones, about the amazing lifestyle of this endangered species and what measures we can take to protect and encourage swifts in our local area.

Date: Saturday 12th May - 10.30am to 12.00pm

Venue: The Milking Parlour, Place Farm (full details will be given on booking)

Cost: £4, or free to Friends of HCPNR

N.B. Booking only (limited places). Please contact Jan Armour on: 01424 715556. Further information can be found on the Friends website: www.friendsofhastingscountrypark.org or Facebook page.

 

 

 

 

 

10:35AM

The Flies have it!

There were some moments of decent weather with bright sunshine and even a bit of heat out of the wind yesterday, so as Barry had mentioned that there was some bee activity near the viewpoint I decided to go to look for some rare early season bees with Jim Barrett. We very quickly found a little group of early colletes flying backwards and forwards (presumably looking for nesting sites) though their constant motion made photography impossible. Even more exciting we then noticed a female grey-backed mining bee (see here) diving into a nest hole, though despite waiting for about 20 minutes, camera ready, she did not come out again! Fortunately for my photographic itch there were lots of these little flies which were more more compliant. These are Johann's bibio, a tiny early spring relative of St Mark's Fly.

Click to read more ...

3:18PM

Rye Harbour

Highlights today were two black-winged stilt on the Pool to the west of Harbour Farm Barns. The birds were first seen during the morning but were still present at at least 3pm feeding at the back of the pit. Also today, little gull and swallow were seen over Long Pit, a buzzard overflew the Beach Reserve, a whitethroat was singing near the viewpoint at Castle Water and the male red-breasted merganser is still on Harbour Farm.