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Saturday 20th June 2015

A light north westerly breeze during the morning, followed by a southerly air flow in the afternoon, produced a decent morning at the observatory, both for moths and birds. 

The overcast conditions mid morning produced several new migrants including 1 Jay, 3 Goldfinch, 2 Reed Warbler, 2 Chiffchaff, 2 Coal Tit, 1 Swallow, 4 Curlew, 1 Grey Heron and 1 Nightingale. 

The Opium Poppies are now out in force at the top of the observatory, looking rather smart. 

This Archer's Dart moth was found in the moth traps this morning, what a stunner.

Ringing: 26 birds ringed during the morning including 11 Starling, 3 Greenfinch, 3 Linnet, 3 Blue Tit, 2 Chiffchaff, 1 Coal Tit, 1 Wren, 1 Great Tit and 1 Nightingale.

Friday 19th June 2015

A cool north westerly breeze continued to keep us warm enough, however extra fleeces were needed early on in the early hours of the morning. Very few birds about this morning with new migrants today included 3 Goldfinch, 42 Swift, 4 Swallow and 1 Skylark that dropped in onto the nature reserve early morning. 2 Mediterranean Gulls were also seen.

In the moth traps this morning was this Green Silver-lines, an absolute beauty and the first of the year for us.

Ringing: 7 birds ringed during the morning including 4 Greenfinch, 1 Goldfinch, 1 Woodpigeon and 1 Robin.

June Litter Pick

Litter pick this Saturday 20th June at 0930hrs start. Usual arrangements on the events page of

Thursday 18th June 2015

Waking up to a warm north westerly breeze wasn't what we hoping for but at this time of year, most our time is spent searching for butterflies, recording moths and ringing baby birds. 

The commoner species of butterfly are started to emerge in small numbers now with this Small Heath, (above). 

New migrants today included 157 Swift, 2 Swallow, 1 House Martin, 5 Goldfinch and 1 Chiffchaff. A Grey Heron flew South early morning. 

Lunar Yellow Underwing, (below) is a nationally scarce species that is common enough in parts of Suffolk but only noted here infrequently. Also of note today is a Small Dotted Buff which we have only noted here previously in 1995. 

Ringing: 2 birds ringed this morning including 2 Linnet. 

Wednesday 17th June 2015

This Hummingbird Hawkmoth,one of two seen feeding on Vipers Bugloss in the last couple of days, is a migrant from more southern climes, which appears in good numbers in some years.

Today was mostly about baby birds, with lots of young now leaving their nests, including the first Wrens and Goldfinch young seen on the wing on site this year. Apart from that there was a flock of 17 Barnacle Geese and 5 Curlew south, probably the start of Autumn migration, certainly as far as the Waders are concerned.

Ringing produced 14 birds, all were youngsters just out of their nests, and included, 1 Ringed Plover, 2 Pied Wagtail, 4 Linnets, 3 Great Tit, and 1 each of Blue Tit, Dunnock, Goldfinch and Greenfinch. 

Tuesday 16th June 2015

Flat calm conditions this morning after a light easterly breeze overnight dropped a few new migrants to the observatory. New migrants included 12 Swift, 3 Swallow, 1 female Blackcap, 5 Sandwich Tern and 2 Common Tern.

In the very early hours of the morning, Chris our Warden had a 1st summer male Red-footed Falcon, literally, shoot through the observatory which allowed viewing of up to two minutes but unfortunately the bird didn't hang around.

This Hornet Moth also graced us for a long enough time to admire this species and to take some decent photographs. This species is not regularly observed here, quite scarce.

Ringing: 13 birds ringed during the morning including 4 Dunnock, 4 Linnet, 2 Starling, 1 Collared Dove, 1 Blackcap and 1 Blue Tit.

Monday 15th June 2015

Greeted by a north easterly breeze and heavy cloud in the early hours of this morning, perhaps some new migrants had arrived overnight? Migrants today included 1 male Blackcap, 16 Swift, 1 Reed Warbler, 5 Goldfinch, 1 juvenile Coal Tit and 1 Spotted Flycatcher. No Coal Tit habitat here so this youngster (below) will be dispersing to find new sites to colonise.

A short seawatch this morning produced 1 Greylag Goose, 2 Canada Goose, 1 Brent Goose and 1 Gannet.

The secluded areas at the observatory, out of the wind, Green Hairstreaks are still being seen now and again like this rather stunning individual.

Ringing: 4 birds ringed this morning including 2 Starling, 1 Pied Wagtail and 1 Linnet.

Sunday 14th June 2015

A bird singing at 0445hrs for the next few hours was interesting and informative. It didn't have a very varied repertoire, despite singing almost continually, but gave notes to remind one of Blyth's Reed and Olivaceous Warbler's. It's skulking behaviour didn't help but fortunately it eventually found a mist net and it turned out to be a Marsh Warbler. Normally Marsh Warblers are very varied in their vocabulary but this individuals was fairly bland. A salutary lesson, if one were needed, that you should never rule this species out when trying to name elusive songsters. Also of note this morning was a northern "acredula" type Willow Warbler. The last Willow Warbler of the spring was back on the 24th May so this bird has also drifted in on the very light easterly breeze this morning. At least 5 Reed Warblers on site is the highest count of the spring with the trapped birds all carrying a bit of fat to carry on to their intended destinations.  A Spot Fly also needs to get a move on is also a characteristically late spring migrant. Conversely the 3 Curlew heading south are autumn migrants. Overlapping spring & autumn migration certainly makes this time of the year confusing for the uninitiated. Three Med Gulls knocking about including two adults are probably failed breeders going walkabout. Moth traps fairly busy but very few migrants. All in all an entertaining morning.

12 birds ringed: 4 reed warbler, 3 linnet, 2 robin, 1 wood pigeon, 1 dunnock, 1 marsh warbler.