Wednesday, 26 April 2017

A slight Hiatus on the Home Front....

or "Apologies for no major post last week..... or this, and this and that for that matter"

Sorry... with all this fine weather, and a need to get spuds in the ground at the right time this year... I hadn't pre-prepared anything...
But the moth trap has had two airings so far this year... and we've started to get visitors to the windows at night!
The Swallows are back... swinging in and out of the barn.... and paying a visit in here, too... which took a bit of juggling to create an escape route....
The Black Redstarts are back, as well....and the duck gave us a nice present the other day... a fresh egg that she'd laid on the fly down by the old apple tree.
How do we know it was fresh? Because anything like an egg down there wouldn't have lasted overnight....
A Little Egret had been fishing in the bief...and flew past the bedroom window just as I looked out... no need for binos...
The Nightingales are back... three singing males at least... and a Zizi was singing from the wall early doors... a Zizi is the Bruant Zizi... or Cirl Bunting... relative of the Yellowhammer... with a similar song but it keeps what it doesn't want a secret... "Little bit of bread and no..."
It misses out the "cheeeese"
We've got a group of young Viperene Snakes [Lat] Coulevre vipérine who have holed up together just inside the barn door... four is the maximum seen at one time.

So here are a few pictures taken recently.....

Here's the Bruant zizi... aka: Cirl Bunting.... zizi'ing his little heart out!!

There are four Viperene snakes in this picture
... count the heads... one sunbathing...
three in the gap 'twixt barn wall and the metal...
sunwarmed...
hinge.



Three from the moth trap....
R>L: a Brindled Beauty, a Small Lappet and a Lunar Marbled Brown....
the curate who named the last probably had cataracts.... it is all grey!!

 
A hoverfly.... hovering!

An Ichneumonid wasp...
possibly a female Ichneumon xanthorius based on looks and flight period.
{But, only experts can really tell... and not from photos!!}

Black Redstart [male].... showing his "shirt-tails"!

And finally... for the moment... an orb weaving spider.
Tetragnatha sp.... possibly Tetragnatha extensa which is the most common...
but I need the other side to be certain...and this one was...
thirty centimetres off the ground in stinging nettles!!




8 comments:

Susan said...

Eupeodes latifasciatus for the hover fly? Based on straight front edges of yellow bands, close to front of tergites 3 and 4, and habitat (species of open habitats with preference for wet meadows with rushes or lush vegetations). On the wing March to October.

Susan said...

Oh, and it's male.

Susan said...

Lovely selection of wildlife, btw. I have snake envy, and the photos of the redstart and cirl bunting are super.

GaynorB said...

Super pics. Unlike Susan I don't have snake envy!

Colin and Elizabeth said...

Great Pictures and I agree with Susan... Snake envy! AND Susan I know how you know its male!!!!

Amelia Frenchgarden said...

I loved the pictures, things are really hotting up around you. Someone pointed out a cirl bunting to us on our patio but it was not nearly as yellow, so I think he must have been mistaken. Your picture is very clear. We have the black redstarts too. They love bathing in the evening. Amelia

Kerry said...

Beautiful photos.

LaPré DelaForge said...

Kerry, thank you... there is real beauty in Nature as you get close in!

Amelia... Cirl Buntings can vary.... and this is the start of their breeding season. This fella is one of the brightest I have seen.... and it was in very good light.
But, the person who pointed it out may have seen a female... she isn't at all bright... and the male, dressed for winter, can only really be recognised easily by the "bandit mask" on the face.

C&E, Gaynor and Susan... thank you... and thanks for the ident Susan... I'll enter that when I do the next post.