The Portland Naturalist

The Portland Naturalist

Thursday, 11 July 2013

Weare-ing Myself Out

After work, I was determined to do a bit of exploring, particularly around the north of the island.  Despite a cool and cloudy start, later on the sun was harsh as ever, although there was a bit more of a breeze. 

I first had a look round Verne Common.  I was amazed just how little you could access.  There is vast swathes of trees and scrub which look like potential migrant-traps, but are within the private area of Portland Port.  Not a great deal of birds about, as you would expect, but I did manage a singing Blackcap, as well as families of Whitethroat, Blue and Long-tailed Tits.  I managed two Portland plant ticks of Perforate St. John's-wort and Upright Hedge-parsley.  This Speckled Wood seemed to think my bicycle's tyre was a nice warm spot to bask.

I then went on towards the East Weares.  On the way, I somehow stumbled on a plant lifer, of this Knotted Hedge-parsley.  Not a rare plant, but probably easily overlooked.

I then had a tough time wading around along the overgrown paths of the East Weares, in shorts!  It wasn't easy keeping an eye on the sky, when I was more worried about when the next Nettle or Bramble might sneak up on me.  But, I did manage to see a singing Lesser Whitethroat, and yet again hear (but not see) a young Peregrine calling.  A new island plant was Wood Spurge.

On the way home in the late afternoon, I thought I'd nip back into King Barrow Quarry, to see if I could be more successful with butterfly photography at this cooler part of the day.  I did get a shot of the Parsley-piert from yesterday (believe it or not, those structures along the stem are it's flowers!).


Finally, the Silver-studded Blues did play ball.  Just goes to show what you can do with just a phone camera!

You need to look pretty hard to see the 'silver studs' (the best above the largest orange crescent).

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