Sunday, 11 July 2010

Wessington Pasture

After wandering around Broadmoor Common we all jumped back in the cars and made a second attempt at finding Wessington Pasture. This time we were successful. The reserve is a mixture of woodland and open pasture and we saw quite a lot of wildlife.

Marbled WhitesAn Aggressive SpiderCommon Green Grasshopper

We didn't see much in the wooded section (apart from a quick flash of a green woodpecker) but again we saw lots of Marbled Whites in the pasture. In fact one of the first things we spotted was a pair of mating Marbled whites. The nicest thing about seeing this pair is that we can tell the difference between the sexes -- the female has slightly orange tinted underwing.

When I got bored photographing the Marbled Whites I moved on to a rather aggressive spider that Bryony had found. No idea what species of spider it is but if you got anywhere near it's funnel like web it would shoot straight out at you. On one occasion it nearly jumped onto the camera lens. Having previously been bitten by a spider (slight tinkling and a little swelling) I decided to escape before it could do me any damage.

The last new thing I photographed at the pasture was a charming little Common Green Grasshopper (or at least that is what I think it is from looking at Bryony's field guide). He was very patient and just sat there for ages while I took a number of photos some, like this one, using the camera's macro function about 2cm from him! On the way back to the car I spotted only my second Harlequin Ladybird to add to the day's species list.

Note that if you visit the pasture please don't park on the road. If you open the gate you can drive down to a small car park. We left the cars on the road as it wasn't obvious there was a car park and came back to find a pleasant note from the farmer asking us not to park on the road in the future.

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