Monday, April 15, 2013

April 1st Half

above.. found 3rd April near north watercourse.. some kind of Orthopteran.. yet to be IDd I haven't seen this species before 

Mason bee, Osmia? found in kitchen

Monday 1st April

Shield and star clover showing seed heads now, Gundelia and Syrian thistle coming into bloom, many milk thistles already in bloom as well as much mustard.

Bee-eaters:  heard flying high.. was poor visibility for much of the afternoon after hot chamsin morning. Also heard first time season on 31st March. Also last couple of days , peaks over 30 degrees C.  A turtle dove noticed on line near look-out corner , flew as we got too close but no cooing heard today.  As we came up from valley heard shrill calls, I think hobbies already back.  No luck spotting stork but probably because we are out too late in the afternoon when they are already settling down to roost.

gazelle: about eight up on ridge to north up beyond hidden watercourse, several others about on south facing slopes to north east.  Hyrax activity by valley road.

Wednesday 3rd April

Nice views of hobby flying about over north and east watercourses, hunting,  bee-eater calls regular now.. great tit song.. usual foursome in the garden.. now Bauhinia is blooming sunbird is regular visitor to the blooms.  Jackdaws, swifts heard just after sunset, larks up on hill north east of watercourse, crested?

Sunday 8th April

About 50 bee-eaters on lines over hillslopes to north east.. several gazelle grazing below.  One Turban buttercup found in north watercourse.

Wednesday 11th April

Sdei Trumot pool

Active pied kingfisher nest!  Left most opposite bank.. bird entered, exited with white thing in mouth.. dropping?  eggshell? went in again.. another in attendance not far off outside.. several more squatting further down on the bank.. appearance of at least two other holes to the right of that one but not in such good repair, may have partially collapsed, at least the whole not so well defined.  Further to right watched another P. K. hover high, attempt dive, change mind last moment close to water, swerve up again , then sploosh! in.. then settled on rock by water but hard to see if it had anything.

Several collared doves came down to water,  one little egret left as soon as arrived, no sign of herons, great whites or cormorants though searched but did eventually find just one spur winged plover.

Saturday 13th April

pleasant walk earlier by north watercourse.. upwards of 19 bachelor gazelle grazing and 3 sets of practice sparring on the other side of the watercourse. Some blackbird song, lots of Jay activity, some turtle dove coos, calls of bee-eaters and, on our way back, calls of stone curlew from over in east field.

Sunday 14th April

Pterophorus found near bat cave on Sunday, on shrubby restharrow
Again, upwards of 18 gazelle by north watercourse, some practice sparring..  some blackbird song, Prinias active and vocal, kestrels heard calling shrill bell call from up from bat cave, cypresses,  hyraxes barks down from shadiker about sunset. 
Lots of Syrian thistle, fleabane, some yellow Achillea,  
Insect life included bush crickets, hoverflies, Pterophorus moth, honeybees about neighbourhood. Mason bee in house a week or so ago.. Osmia, blue eyed job. A few days ago striped hawk moth on curtains french windows,  Hyles livornica.  

15 April
as yesterday just under 18.5 degrees C at about 6.30 p.m. . again, 18+ male gazelle of varying ages by north watercourse, some practice sparring, kestrel up the hill amongst the cypresses, call heard, one perched on line over hillside, lots of jays active by north watercourse dirt road, cooing collared and turtle doves in pines, greenfinches heard there too,  scampering hyrax on valley road on our way back, flock of 15 or so bee-eaters hawking and calling over us, hoodies, blackbird, 

lots of the dark beetles with small white spots on syrian thistles and similar plants. 

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