Friday, 18 April 2014

Hilfield Reservoir - 17.4.14

Common Sandpiper and Grey Wagtail
After work I decided to have a walk around the reservoir as Carey was out with friends. A quick scan over the water produced 40+ Sand Martin and at least a dozen Swallow. On the dam was a Common Sandpiper and just then a high pitched zeeep got my attention as a Yellow Wagtail flew over. I bumped into Steve near the hide where he told me he'd had a Little Egret the day before! From the SE fountain I finally picked up 2 Common Tern hawking over the water. Other highlights were a Sparrowhawk over the viewpoint along with 2 Red Kite and a Coal Tit. As I was watching the Coal Tit I noticed a small butterfly heading towards me. It was only when it briefly settled I realised it was a Thorn Moth sp. It was smaller than an Orange-Tip butterfly and a pale yellowy cream colour. I tried to get a photo but the bugger wouldn't stay still long enough! I had a quick look on Google and Early and Purple Thorn were the wrong colour so it looks like it was a Little Thorn moth. Apparently they fly in the day and even in cloudy conditions as it was today. But according to Alan Reynolds this would be a new species for Hertfordshire! So I guess its one that got away? As I reached the dam a Grey Wagtail landed briefly and a Linnet flew south. I had a quick scan along the waters edge for the Common Sandpiper and found 2 quickly followed by a 3rd that flew in.

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