Drakelow sighting reported by Tom Cockburn

The morning period was given over to coverage of the SK21 transect for butterfly recording.

DRAKELOW NATURE RESERVE: Tuesday 31st July 0945 – 1530. The morning period was given over to coverage of the SK21 transect for butterfly recording. During the period there was a temperature range from 16C to 19C with a light SW wind and variable loud cover. BUTTERFLIES: In all 13 species were logged with three species exceeding 20 insects. These were Green-veined White (25), Common Blue (24) and Small Heath (20). The only other species in double figures was the Speckled Wood (11). Other species were Meadow Brown (nine), Gatekeeper and Brown Argus (eight), Small Copper (four), Large White (three), Essex Skipper (two) with singles of Small White, Comma and Ringlet. DRAGONFLIES: A total of 11 species were recorded with a Migrant Hawker added to the year list. The only species that could be recorded as common was the Common Blue. The Brown Hawker was widespread but only numbered nine in all with the Southern Hawker mustering four individuals. Male Emperors were seen patrolling over two waters. The Ruddy Darter numbered 15 with 13 of them round the fish pond. BIRDS: Overall there was little to shout about but a Great White Egret, dwarfing three juvenile Little Egrets on the Strip, made for some pleasant viewing during the lunch break. A total of Seven Green Sandpipers were seen and, with three Lapwings, were the only waders. Earlier records included Black-tailed Godwit (28th and 29th), 11 Green Sandpipers (28th) , Great White Egret (28th and 29th) Mandarin (seven on 29th) and Garganey (29th). FOOTFALL: JUNE: SELF 13, OTHERS 90. In 2017 the figures were 12 and 112 respectively. JULY: SELF 11, OTHERS 102. The respective numbers in 2017 were ten and 144. With thanks to AG KW, RW, AB, DH, AL, NC, MJH, RMRJ, KS, PH , PJ, MW and FM.