And so to June

Saturday 1st - Sunday 2nd June 2013
Pearl-bordered Fritillary, Botany Bay Plantation
To round off from my previous post: not much else to report for the end of May apart from a local Cuckoo calling early morning Thursday and Friday that I could hear from my house, a nice sound to wake up to. And so to June, and two days of beautiful warm and sunny weather.I started and finished Saturday in the Forest. In the morning with Mark our search for Firecrest took us to RSPB Nagshead, where we have excellent views just beyond the car park at the start of the trails. We noted three singing males all together. In the area between the long and short trails just up from here, a pair of Spotted Flycatchers were active, and in the same general area we also saw a female Redstart and five Pied Flycatchers, a female and four singing males. Later at Brierley unsuccessfully looking for woodland butterflies we did have good views of an overhead male Goshawk at least; also four Broad-bodied Chasers.
Broad-bodied Chaser, Brierley
Before returning to the Forest in the evening, I spent the afternoon first at Kiftsgate, and then at the National Trust's nearby Hidcote Manor Garden. At Hidcote, a male Spotted Flycatcher was singing repeatedly around the Lily Pond area. The pond itself hold both Smooth Newts and Great Crested Newts which are always worth a look.
Spotted Flycatcher, Hidcote Manor Garden - more interested in singing than catching all those nearby flies
Great Crested Newt, Hidcote Manor Garden
Smooth Newt, Hidcote Manor Garden
Back to the Forest in the evening with Mike, where we got Nightjar and Woodcock at a couple of sites, including Boysgrave, plus calling Tawny Owls and close encounters with Wild Boar. What a cracking day.
Wild Boar, Boysgrave
Sunday was much more leisurely, if that's the right word. A couple of hours trying to make my garden nearer the Kiftsgate/Hidcote end of the horticultural scale and then an afternoon out at Nympsfield visitng gardens open for charity with Linda, stopping at Cirencester Woods 'en route' (it wasn't quite on the way, but near enough). This was my third recent attempt, but I finally saw Pearl-bordered Fritillaries, c6, in Botany Bay Plantation at Overley Wood. They have been late this year, like everything else, but better late than ever. They do look good and glad I made the effort. Thanks again to Mark for finding the hotspot as I had limited time.

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