Wednesday, 27 December 2017

Margam park/Abbey.

     There has been an unusually large influx of Hawfinches into the UK this autumn, with birds
     being found all over England and some flocks reaching Wales. On November 9th, I was in
     the hide at Kenfig pool when I heard that 6 Hawfinches had flown north west over the pool.
     I decided to look for them at Margam park, the most likely location for them to stop.
         I was in luck! Ten minutes after parking at the abbey church, all 6 birds flew around the
     churchyard and dropped into a large Yew tree. I got further brief views of them feeding on the
     Yew berries and put the news out. Rob Jones was soon there and managed to see them well.
         I have been back there half a dozen times and have only failed to see them once, many other
     local birders have been to see them also. The birds seem to have spread out over the area and
     I have noticed they are hanging around in singles and pairs. This morning there was one just
     inside the park entrance gates, one in the abbey car park and a pair in the abbey Yews.
        There seems to be enough berries in the trees to keep them in food for a while yet.

        Hawfinch in Yew

     Hawfinch in the abbey car park.


      Long tailed tit


      Song thrush


Tuesday, 22 August 2017

Nantyffyllon moth light.

    Old lady

    Knot grass

    Knot grass, salicis form

   Black arches

   Ruby tiger


   Small rufous.
   51 sp in all on a muggy night with loads of flying ants and tiny beetles making a nuisance.

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Garnwen 12/8/17

    Cheilosia bergenstammi

    Platycheirus rosarum

    Eristalis arbustorum

    Eristalis pertinax

    Conops quadrifasciatus.

Saturday, 29 July 2017

Moth highlights of a busy July.

     Thyme plume. Ogmore down on 1st

      Small plume, Ogmore down on 1st

      Acleris schalleriana, Llangynwyd on 3rd. New for the valley

      Elachista adscitella, Alun valley on 20th, new for Glamorgan

       Elachista biatomella, Ogmore down on 20th. New for East Glamorgan, 4th county record.

       Migrant plume, Merthyr mawr on 24th. Netted by George Tordoff. New for Glamorgan.

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Zaraea fasciata

Came across this sawfly species which was formely known as (Abia fasciata) but is now known as Zarea fasciata it's a very impressive sawfly at first i thought that it was some sort of bee species but i couldn't think of any species that had these chocolate brown patches on the wings so i started to think its got to be a sawfly species again feeding on the hogweed along the forestry tracks

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Lophosia fasciata

I came across this tachid fly whilst out checking the hogweed for hoverflies there has only been 105 records in the whole of UK and Ireland with just 8 records for wales and now a first record for the valley and the nearest records are Rhoose and Merthyr (correction Martyn has already logged this species in Caerau) so this is the second species to be found on opposite sides of the valley, and i think it likes forestry plantations on upland areas

Sunday, 2 July 2017

Spent the weekend outside the valley with a visit to Kenfig followed by a visit to parc slip today

A nice Volucella Zonaria was feeding on bramble blossom on side of tarmac pavement that runs upto the junction at Maesteg cemetery from Cemetery road along with a nice Microdon and my first Tachina Grossa of the year on the open fields by school. I decided to do a trip outside the valley over the weekend to kenfig pool and parc slip which turned out to be a good decision because i recorded my first sighting of Eristalinus sepulchralis at parc slip today. Other insects of note were 2 Banded General that were feeding on the Hogweed 

 Tachina Grossa

 Volucella Zonaria
 Stratiomys potamida Banded general

Eristalinus sepulchralis

Wednesday, 28 June 2017

New moths this week. 5 new for the valley and 12 new for my home KM square.

    Pammene germmana. Llangynwyd. New for the valley.
    Only two previous records in The moths of Glamorgan, 1921 and 1991.

    Calamotropha palludella, Nantyffyllon. New for square.

    Epinotia costipunctana, Nantyffyllon, new for valley.

    Epinotia signatana, Nantyffyllon, new for valley.
    Only two previous records in TMOG, 1895 and 1995.

    Coleophora trifolii, Nantyffyllon, new for valley.

    Shark, Nantyffyllon, new for square.

    Homoeosoma sinuella, Nantyffyllon, new for square.

    Catoptria margaritella, Nantyffyllon, new for square.

    Poplar grey, Nantyffyllon, new for square.

    Rhyacionia pinivorana, Nantyffyllon, new for square.
    Also new for Nantyffyllon square, Marsh oblique barred, Round winged muslin
    and Rosy footman.

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Garnwen this afternoon just as the rain stopped

Had a little stroll along the forestry track and a little look at the field full of buttercups on right hand side for some hoverflies. It was a slow start as it was still raining a little bit and very cloudy but still good numbers of Episyrphus balteatus that seemed to be everywhere despite the weather. As the weather cleared i came across my first Scaeva pyrastri of the year in the long grass just off the track. A little further along i came across what i thought was the other migrant species of Scaeva selenitica. It was only when i got home and looked at the photo's on the computer that i started to question the ID of the Scaeva selenitica as it didnt look right to me, but after looking at many images of other species i just thought that maybe it was a weird looking Scaeva. After posting the images the Admins on the UK hoverflies page instantly noticed that it may not be a Scaeva but actually a Eupeodes species and Eupeodes lapponicus was mentioned to my surprise. But this is a complex species and probably a specimen is needed to get 100% ID. But still glad i made the effort to get out on such a poor day weather wise. Once the rain stopped and the sun started to shine hoverflies were out in force on the buttercups with 200+ Episyrphus balteatus 50+ Meliscaeva auricollis. A nice black form of Volucella bombylans and a very unusual clear winged Eristalis rupium was nice to see also. On another note 2 Sicus ferrugineus were nice to see also

 Eupeodes (lapponicus)? waiting for confirmation if possible 

 black form of Volucella bombylans
 Eristalis rupium without the chocolate shading you would normally see on the wings
 Melangyna lasiophthamla
Sicus ferrugineus conopid family

Monday, 29 May 2017

Highlights from Merthyr mawr the weekend.

    Partial albino Blackbird

    Four spotted footman larva

    Hounds tongue

    Tree pipit

    Notocelia cynosbatella

    Adela croesella

   Cauchas rufimitrella.