Saturday, 11 March 2017

The Sun Shone and All was Well with the World

With the Sun Shining we decided to take a Saturday' Stroll.

Sitting on the Bus on our way down to start the Stroll we noticed a Mistle Thrush: our first of the year!

Disembarking in Yarnton Way, we intended to walk up to Southmere Lake: from there up to the former Thamesmead Golf Course via a short stretch of The Ridgeway and then up to the Thames Path, turning right to walk Downstream towards the Erith area.

Standing beside Southmere Lake we were Super-Fortunate that a (female) Pochard decided to swim towards us viz.

On the former Golf Course, we spotted a Brimstone Butterfly and a Peacock Butterfly: and were Super-Pleased to see the hoped-for, Coltsfoot viz.

We say hoped-for since the previous Year we had seen what we thought might be Coltsfoot leaves and Wow, we were right. Truth to tell, the whole point of the Outing was to try to find some flowering Coltsfoot. We suppose we must sound easily pleased!

We also spotted a Little Critter (kindly Identified for us as a probable Yellow-Legged Mining Bee) visiting a Dandelion viz.

Beside the short stretch of, The Ridgeway, connecting the former Golf Course with the Thames Path, we came across a Comma Butterfly viz.

Shortly after arriving on the Thames Path we chanced across a small Population of Rue-Leaved Saxifrage viz.

We had previously been aware of two other Populations growing beside the Thames Path, both further Downstream.

Walking along the Thames Path, we arrived at the Outfall of the Crossness Sewage Works. It was High Tide and we noticed some Black-Tailed Godwits &c. viz.

waiting for the Tide to turn and the Mud to reappear.

Slightly further Downstream, a Peacock Butterfly was visiting an assumed Cherry Plum viz.

Shortly afterwards, it was lovely to see that there are now a number of flowers on the White Ramping Fumitory (that grows close to the Waste Incinerator) viz.

There were a few Lesser Celandines in flower: including this one which had attracted a number of Little Critters viz.

Including we think, Pollen Beetles.

Growing just inside the Fence beside the Waste Incinerator, we spotted an Anenome Blanda viz.

Presumably not planted.

A couple of Primroses were flowering and unless we are very much mistooken, the first Cowslip flowers will be showing fairly shortly viz.

On the now derelict Belvedere Power Station' Jetty, we noticed fairly distant Oystercatchers and Shelducks sharing a High Tide Roost viz.

Further Downstream, beside the Thames' Foreshore area favoured by the dear Ringed Plovers (it being High Tide, they were presumably safely tucked up in their High Water Roost, somewhere Inland, we think), the Catkins on an assumed Goat Willow looked Very-Pretty viz.

And shortly thereafter, we noticed a Little Critter, a Shield Bug we think, on Oxford Ragwort viz.

Turning towards the Footpath that connects the Thames Path to Church Manorway, we thought, Golly! Is that a White Butterfly on that Dandelion? And, Yes it was: a Small White Butterfly viz.

Interestingly, we are aware of a local' sighting, earlier in the Month, of another possible Small White Butterfly: sadly, the person who saw the Butterfly, was unable to Identify it with full confidence.

There were also at least two Small Tortoiseshell Butterflies present viz.

And then, after a quick wander around the Grounds of the Church of St John the Baptist where we think we saw three different species of Sedum/Stonecrop, it was time to catch a Bus to take us on the first leg of our Homeward Journey.

A Pretty Much Perfect Outing! Helped possibly by us maintaining a sense of Wonder at even the most seemingly commonplace, such as Common Field-SpeedwellCommon Groundsel, Dandelions, Red Dead-Nettle and Shepherd's Purse.

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

The 'Patchwork Challenge' 2017 ~ Slow Going but Enjoyable

We are making very slow progress towards our Target of 60 Bird' Species and are beginning to think that the Target might be a little Ambitious! But it's Enjoyable so we ain't Complaining.

As at 28 February 2017 we have seen:

Black-Headed Gull
Black-Tailed Godwit
Blue Tit
Canada Goose 
Carrion Crow
Collared Dove
Common Gull
Common Sandpiper 
Curlew (seen here with some Redshanks) viz.

Great Black-Backed Gull
Great Tit
Grey Heron
Grey Wagtail
Herring Gull
House Sparrow
Lesser Black-Backed Gull
Long-Tailed Tit
Oystercatcher viz.

Pied Wagtail
Ringed Plover
Ring-Necked Parakeet
Rock Pipit viz.

Rock Dove/Feral Pigeon
(a distant) Shoveler (the first one we have ever knowingly seen on the 'Patch', distant or otherwise!) viz.

Wood Pigeon

Sadly, there still doesn't seem to be a Cetti's Warbler living beside the Footpath running up from Crabtree Manorway North to the Thames Path this Year.