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Saturday, 30 June 2018

Dizzy in a haze for 30 days...

No lizards in a bottle for me nor indeed much else in such scorching heat.
So, today was the only proper 30DWiJ 'bucket list' event which actually happened!! - a macro photo course at Blashford, run by John and attended by myself, Sahrah and two others and which was very successful albeit terribly difficult to take sample photos for critique in the afternoon session with so much light.

With all three lanes of traffic at J1 slamming on brake lights I took an 'executive decision' to go via Bramshaw just in case there was an incident and, being pretty early, was a pleasant detour through the heart of the forest via Milkham with no traffic other than a handful of MAMILs. It was so nice it seemed a shame to miss out by being in a classroom for most of the day but, with the shutters down and fans on it was a very comfortable environment and it was actually nice to avoid this continuing heatwave.

On arrival the pond held several Anasymia lineata and a small frog on a lily whilst the path by the tool store had a two foot Grass Snake briefly; later in the day the usual snake sites were unsurprisingly empty.

With the moth trap unavailable J6x4 set up shop in Tern Hide.

After lunch, and searching for photo-subjects, I made a bee-line (no pun intended), for the beewolf spot and found two, neither keen on stopping. The second one was busy around my legs carrying a honeybee and eventually having dumped it on the ground, returned, picked it up and flew straight into a burrow. Picture with prey below but sadly not the in flight 'money shot'!!

What few dragonflies, Emperor, Black-tailed Skimmer and a single Brown Hawker, were all too 'busy'.

Practiced a few techniques from the course before retiring to Ivy  South briefly were the grebes still have two young and some of the Common Terns have fledged; a nice Silver-washed Fritilliary was on brambles on the way back.

Finally, after the course finished, a solo excursion through the moth trap (thanks to Jim) held plenty of moths but I didn't have time nor enthusiasm to dwell too long. Don't remember seeing Clouded Brindle before.

Back home the lavender is attracting plenty of honeybees, the odd bumble, some Lasioglossum spp and another bee which was just too quick but felt like a flower bee spp.

Strangely a mixed group of adult and juvenile Swallows, about 20 strong appeared overhead - wonder where they came from and where they might be going so early in the summer. A couple of Swifts also.

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