Sunday, 30 June 2013


A mate sent me the photo of this beautiful and colourful caterpillar that is feeding in his Didcot garden and wondered if I could tell him what name it's known by Fortunately I have seen this rather striking individual before and was able to tell him it is the caterpillar of the Mullein Moth.

Thursday, 27 June 2013


I know it's a common garden Moth but nevertheless it's also a most striking individual and always a pleasure to see.
I have been under the illusion that fellow wildlife bloggers are knowledgeable and red hot at identification but whenever I leave challenges they are rarely taken up - perhaps the embarrassment of getting it wrong is just too much for you all to cope with.

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

No! Not There .

This fledged Starling new something was amiss and fortunately spotted the murderous cat patiently waiting to pounce and turn it into a has-been before it became another awful death statistic that the oh! so many unregulated cats are responsible for and are allowed to overrun our gardens  causing mayhem. Well meaning, garden bird feeding folk, often feel they are creating a garden restaurant for these efficient killing machines.
On the feeders recently a house Sparrow showing white feathers where white feathers shouldn't be, it doesn't compare with the Abingdon very striking albino Starling but nevertheless it caught my attention.
This afternoon I found time to mount my two wheeled steed and pedal along the 417. After dismounting I roamed the Stutfield Brook meadows enjoying the pleasant sunny and windless weather noting Whitethroat, Garden Warbler, Buzzard, Yellowhammer plus the usual common fare one encounters.
Looking into the brook and getting stung by nettles as I teetered on the bank edge I was rewarded with I think both Female Banded and Beautiful Demoiselle, please correct me if i'm wrong in fact apart from Small Tortoiseshell Butterfly and Wasp Beetle I have not had time to identify the other insects, so please feel free to help.
 No! not there
 Yes! over there
 Boo Hiss

Ok - I will name the above little beauty: oedemera nobilis


Monday, 24 June 2013

Thea - ry

Woops !  Of course that should be theory still I guess you get the gist, anyway I have been thinking about just why some birders travel miles and miles to tick a rare bird and others like myself experience greater joy from our stay at home birding and which group is the more virtuous. The answer is we are all important for the future of our Avian friends whether it be through our club subscriptions or the involvement in projects aimed at helping specific species in trouble.

                                          Ring Ouzel - Specific to a few sites on passage in Oxon.

                                           and Dipper another black and white bird that generates excitement when seen in Oxon.

Pathetic attempt to photograph a bird and ending up with a rather drab pic of a roof.

Friday, 21 June 2013

Tree Sparrow with food for chick.

 Tree Sparrow
 Banded Demoiselle
 Small Skipper
Winter Linnets
 Silver Ground Carpet
Mayfly Siphlonurus Lacustris
Silver Y
 Eupeodes Nitens

Lesser Treble Bar
 Four Spotted Chaser
 Green Finch with apparent infection
This Tree Sparrow pictured on a house has a rather large insect for the chicks at home in the nest. Nearly all the other interest has been snapping Insects as the birds and their youngsters are keeping pretty well hidden from view.

Thursday, 13 June 2013

Ant and Pec

The Green Woodpecker has been anting in the Stanford garden again and its presence has been a  great joy for me particularly as it was pretty obvious that with the high wind and overcast sky, a trip out into the countryside would be a waste of time because there would be very little from the insect world that was likely to be on the move and birds would be difficult to find.

Monday, 10 June 2013

You Must Be Having A Laugh.

Some Ants have been a bit troublesome getting into the kitchen and scurrying here and there in their quest to service the nest that is in the garden outside. Help has turned up in the form of a Green Woodpecker that has given close views as it unrolls its long sticky tongue and disposes of many of these troublesome creatures.

Saturday, 8 June 2013


A walk through the yet to be mown fields alongside the 417 and close to Stutfield Brook turned up a dragonflylike creature that had a fluttery flight more like a butterfly than the whirring wing beats of a dragonfly. It was of course a female Beautiful Demoiselle and quite a spectacular individual it was too. The first photo shows the silvery wing reflectiveness caused by the bright sunlight.


Helophilus  Pendulus

Friday, 7 June 2013

Grassed Up.

With the much improved weather of late suddenly there are meadows of lush grass and quite a few fields have been cut for silage. My farmer friends tell me the yields are surprisingly pretty good seeing as even with the warmer days many nights have been rather cold.
Most things seem about a month or so late and the brown type butterflies are no exception with apart from mainly peacocks very little else.
A stroll in the as yet uncut meadows of a friends farm gave me singing chiffchaff and a fleeting glimpse of a bird looking like a pied flycatcher that i'll be keeping a look out for on future visits.
This particular farm with its "left alone wild bits" is shouting out to me that tree sparrow and spotted flycatcher must surely be on site, I guess I need to try harder and look longer.