Aylmerton Nature Diary

Sunday 31st July

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Juvenile Cuckoo, Weaver’s Way, Felbrigg Park

It was village fete day yesterday so, what with helping to set up in the morning and manning the bookstall in the afternoon, time was limited. However, I did manage to get out for a quick walk in the park just after lunch. The shelter-belt was very quiet as I made my way down towards the lake – no mixed feeding flock and certainly no sign of the Spotted Flycatchers in the isolated oaks. I was systematically working the rough grazing meadow west of the top sluice, for butterflies and dragonflies, when a falcon sped through my view – it was a Hobby and, judging by it’s size and colouration, probably the 1st summer bird that’s been hanging about recently. I crossed the sluice and circled the eastern side of the lake to find it sat up in it’s favourite dead trees, near the viewing screen. It wasn’t long before it took off and disappeared from view. Whilst scanning the surrounding vegetation I came across an adult Spotted Flycatcher – in almost exactly the same place as a couple of weeks ago. I’m certain that these are different birds from those, recently discovered, along the shelter-belt. I met up with Simon, who told me where he’d seen yesterday’s juvenile Cuckoo and we went to see if we could relocate it. Sure enough, right on cue, there it was by the old brick and flint wall, along the Weaver’s Way. We watched it for twenty minutes before it finally disappeared into the bushes below the dam. On the lake itself, my first Small Red-eyed Damselfly of the year, a couple of female Brown Hawker ovipositing and a Banded Demoiselle.

1st Summer Hobby, dead trees near viewing screen

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Small Red-eyed Damselfly – my first this year, Felbrigg Lake

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Female Brown Hawker, ovipositing

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Another shot of the lovely and relatively obliging Cuckoo

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Back on the fete bookstall late afternoon, my attention was captured by another Hobby over the village hall.

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