Children of the Corn

Posted by Graeme Lyons , Saturday 12 February 2011 16:08

I new it was gonna be a good day when I heard (and then saw) a Blackcap singing in the neighbours garden when I was getting ready first thing. Round four of the winter farmland bird surveys already and spring was very much in the air today with dozens of Skylarks singing as well as at least five Corn Buntings (above) singing too. What was interesting was the absence of certain birds, I didn't see a single Song Thrush, Linnet or Meadow Pipit today and the Common Gulls seem to have moved on also. All the big flocks seem to have disbanded and everything is much more spread out. Best part of the day though was getting at least two ticks. I found this Hairy Snail Trichia hispida under a very old Giant Puffball, I've seen the shell before but never a live specimen.
As I was walking back I caught a couple of different Aphodius dung beetles to identify later and a had a quick look at a patch of gorse to see if I could see Gorse Shieldbug Piezodorus lituratus as I have never seen this common species. First branch I looked at had one sitting right out in the open!  Note the red antennae and the  bluish stripes along the sides of the body. I had a really awesome day, glad I got a survey in and ended the day on 3095 species. The weather tomorrow looks awful so I think I'll take the day off which means I'm going out tonight!

2 Response to "Children of the Corn"

Crafty Green Poet Says:

I'm looking forward to hearing blackcaps again, one of my favourite birdsongs! Nice shieldbug there too, I've never seen that species.

Graeme Lyons Says:

It's a good one! I was thinking today how rubbish it would be if bird song was not pleasing to the human ear. Imagine if Skylarks sounded like finger nails on a blackboard and Nightingales like car alarms. That would suck big time.

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