Saturday, 6 July 2013

6th of July: Sunny spectacles

Plant discoveries on the Point today included two species of orchid. Although we have what looks like ideal habitat for orchids, they are very rare. Only four species have been seen and these are by no means annual.
Pyramidal Orchid

Common Spotted-orchid

Also in evidence now are Cinnabar moth caterpillars, these are coloured black and yellow to warn potential predators that they are poisonous. They get their toxicity from feeding on Ragwort.
Cinnabar moth caterpillars feeding on Ragwort

Another notable sighting today was this Hornet Clearwing Moth. The same size as a true hornet, but if you look closely the wings are transparent. These moths spend up to three years inside the trunk of Poplar trees, before emerging as adults on sunny days in July.

Dark Green Fritillaries are now taking to the wing on the Point. They are Norfolk's only resident fritillary and look spectacular as they gracefuly glide around the dunes.
Dark green fritillaries

Our Ringed Plover which is nesting near the lifeboat house is doing well. It is allowing 100's of visitors a day to get close up views of it incubating its eggs.

Here also is some night vision footage of a nest change taking place:

Oystercatcher chicks are continuing to hatch on the point, like this dear little fellow below. 

Birds seen today include a late Common Whitethroat, a Hobby, 300+ Knot, 122 Bar-tailed Godwits, a Greenshank, and a Marsh Harrier. And here is a photo of a Wood Pigeon on its nest in the plantation, it is our 28th breeding bird species of 2013.
(photos by Matt and Paul)

- Paul and Ajay

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