Saturday 23rd April 2017: It was warm, sunny afternoon on the Common and I decided to have a look for the Green Hairstreak butterflies that had been observed on the NW side of the Common just over a week ago during a similar really sunny day. I was in luck and on arriving at the location I was greeted by the sight of 2 stunning ♂ Green Hairstreaks chasing about over the scrub. Thankfully these territorial individuals were landing now and then on their favoured perches and I was able to get some photos. After spending a while observing these beautiful butterflies I continued my walk taking the path that runs below the steep gorse bank. Just past this bank at the junction of footpaths I recorded a 3rd Green Hairstreak flitting about over the Brambles, Broom and young Silver Birch.
Whilst walking my circuit which then took me through the gorse scrub on the upper area of the Common and back around to the main car park I noted 4 other species of butterfly: 7 Speckled Wood, 2 Orange Tip, 1 Holly Blue and 1 Large White.
Green Hairstreak (Callophrys rubi)
Tuesday 25th April 2017:
A ♂ Lesser Whitethroat was new in today with an individual perching up & singing regularly on the scrub North of the main Wilden Top car park. For me, a Lesser Whitethroat's rattling warble is a real highlight in terms of Spring birdsong!
Lesser Whitethroat (Sylvia curruca)
Wednesday 26th April 2017:
Today I paid a visit to Hillditch Pool and decided to walk along the pool's fringes looking for inverts. I was in luck as I flushed a Large Red Damselfly. My first Odonata (that's dragonflies and damselflies to you and I) record for the site this year.
Large Red Damselfly (Pyrrhosoma nymphula)
Thursday 27th April 2017:
I started today's visit at the main car park. The Lesser Whitethroat was still singing from the scrub near the cattle grid and a Common Whitethroat was singing from the bramble scrub next to car park. A pair of Linnets were also present in this area.
From the northern side of the Common I headed over to the western side (other side of the A40250) where a 2nd Lesser Whitethroat was present singing.
Linnet (Carduelis cannabina)
Friday 28th April 2017:
Today I paid a visit to Hillditch Pool. Sadly the weather had dropped cooler and there was very little butterfly activity (just a single Small Tortoiseshell) and no sign of any damselflies. Still, it was an interesting visit birdwise as a number of species seem to be pairing up with pairs of Treecreeper, Song Thrush and Jay all observed. A single female Goldcrest was also noted.
From the pool I headed over to the Common where the undoubted highlight was seeing a flock of c.60 House Martins wheeling about overhead as they gradually drifted off heading NW.
Song Thrush (Turdus philomelos)