The amazing start to the 2011 Odonata season continues with a Four-spotted Chaser at Tophill Low NR breaking the VC61 record by 3 days. The previous earliest being singles at Skipworth Common, North Yorkshire and Tophill Low Nature Reserve, East Yorkshire (both VC61 despite being different counties) on 28th April 2007.
Also on the wing, or perhaps better phrased ‘kicked out of the vegetation’ as very little of anything is flying strongly at the moment, included: - 128 Large Red Damselflies, 19 Azure Damselflies, 35 Common Blue Damselflies and 3 Blue-tailed Damselflies.
It appears that the records of Azure, Common Blue and Blue-tailed Damselfly at Tophill Low NR were the first Yorkshire sightings on Saturday, and all new earliest dates for VC61. Also, a new earliest date for Variable Damselfly was set today by EYDragonfly at Broomfleet Washlands, taking 5 days off the previous best of 30th April 2009. Impressive start to the season with 6 species confirmed as being on the wing. Check out the Yorkshire BDS sightings page for more reported sightings.
A drop in temperatures late-afternoon saw plenty of hirundines drop with 270+ Sand Martin, 50+ House Martin and 40+ Swallow over D res. A Brambling was around the car park early-afternoon, a Cuckoo was at the north end of the site, 5+ Common Terns toured around and 10+ flava Wagtails moved north through during the day. For all the latest Tophill news click here
A reasonable number of butterflies saw 114 counted of 9 species, including 1 Small Copper and 5 Red Admirals.
A healthy 15+ Grass Snakes were encountered and a Water Vole took a plunge at East Pond after showing briefly from the viewing area.
But as the vegetation grows, the fungi gets harder to find. Still a few Charcoal Cups to be found and a small amount of Glistening Inkcap the best of it.