It was a pleasant enough afternoon so I decided to wander up to soil hill to see what was going on. The warm air temperature had brought out the butterflies in force. On the way up I found Small Copper, and various whites. Once at the top I also found Peacock, Small Tortoiseshell and Meadow Brown bringing me up to a reasonable butterfly total for the walk.
-Green Veined White
It was at the main pond on the track that I got my biggest shock of the day. As I approached I noticed two large black insects hovering next to the side and immediately recognised them as black darters, which I was not expecting. They were then joined by a large but very fresh male Common Hawker which was hunting the ponds edge. I had not expected any dragonflies up here, and these were the first I have ever seen, so to find 2 species was something of a pleasant surprise.
-Male Common Hawker
-Male Black Darter (1 of 2)
As for birds, the main group of wildlife I had expected to see, they were sadly very lacking, reduced to flushed skylarks and meadow pipits that refused to stick around. I only managed to find one Meadow Pipit which did not fly away.
On the way down though I spotted a very large group of starlings that moved around landing on the pylons that were up there.
On the whole it was a very good trip, and found some lovely wildlife, even if it was lacking a little on the bird front.