Sightings – August 2008

GWT Pasque Flower Reserve (31 August, contributed by Peter Fitchett)

Although full cloud cover with showers threatening, a good selection of blue butterflies was seen in the afternoon. Adonis, Common, Chalkhill and Brown Argus were all present and with the humid conditions there were good opportunities for photography. Meadow Browns were about plus one Green Veined White and a few Small Heaths. Moths too were there, plenty of Straw Dot with single examples of Setaceous Hebrew Character, Yellow Shell, Magpie and Dusky Sallow, and a large group of Buff-tip moth caterpillers were observed on a small tree.

Witcombe Reservoir (27 August, contributed by Gordon Avery)

A nice find this morning during my WEBS count was a juvenile Arctic Tern that stayed around for about half hour, also worthy of note were: a Common Sandpiper, a Mandarin and a Kingfisher

Two Common Terns and a Tufted Duck with full grown ducklings on the pools by Lydney Industrial estate.

Guscar and Aylburton (21 August, contributed by Mike Smart)

On a moderately high tide (8.0 metres at 11.30 am), any flocks of small Palaearctic or American waders eluded me. Nevertheless, there were at least 475 Curlews feeding on the mudbanks before the tide rose and they went to high tide roosts at Guscar and Pill House. The only other wader was a lone Common Sandpiper. Also a Little Egret, some autumn migrants: about 50 Swallows, 7 Wheatears and 3 Yellow Wagtails.

Two Common Terns and a Tufted Duck with full grown ducklings on the pools by Lydney Industrial estate.

Coombe Hill and Ashleworth (19 August, contributed by Mike Smart and Les Brown)

Quite apart from all the excitement over the Stilt Sandpiper seen yesterday evening, there was a good selection of migrants at Coombe Hill in the morning: all the hay fields (except one neighbour’s field) have been cut and cattle have already been grazing, resulting in an even sward and control of vegetation round the scrapes. There were already 150 geese (85 Canadas, 64 Greylags, 1 Barnacle and a Greylag x Barhead cross; one of the Greylags was carrying a white plastic ring inscribed J16; can anyone identify the origin?); 25 Teal, four Shoveler; a good selection of passage waders – 2 Ringed Plover, 2 Little Ringed Plover, one Wood Sandpiper, six Green Sandpiper, seven Snipe and a Black-tailed Godwit (NB not one of the usual Glos wader quarter of Curlew, Lapwing, Redshank, Dunlin); first thing there was heavy passage of Sand Martins (over a hundred) and Swallows; plus the odd Wheatear, and singing Willow Warbler and Chiffchaff along the canal.

At Ashleworth, the high river level has caused water to back up into the reserve, lightly flooding the main field in front of the hide; this means that the grass which has been cut but not baled on some fields on the reserve will be very difficult to collect; some neighbouring fields not cut yet: about 40 Mallard and three Teal.

CWP(E) (11 August, contributed by Andy Jayne)

At pit 126 there was a juvenile Shelduck, two Teal, 11 Little Grebes, two Little Egrets, two juvenile Little Ringed Plovers, two Dunlin, seven Green Sandpipers and two Common Sandpipers. Also a Brown Hawker.

Longford (2 August, contributed by Andy Jayne)

A Hobby took a House Martin at 11.20 this morning.

Coombe Hill (1 August, contributed by Andy Jayne)

An adult Water Rail seen and another bird calling.

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