THURSDAY 15 MAY
The hottest day of the year so far with wall-to-wall sunshine sending the afternoon temperatures soaring to 22 degrees C. As a result, I concentrated on butterfly transects....
In ASHLEY GREEN ROAD, between CHESHAM and ASHLEY GREEN (SP 9704), a singing male Common Whitethroat in the hedgerow opposite the former Peugeot garage and another dead Badger in the same area. In ASHLEY GREEN VILLAGE (SP 9705), Wren, Jackdaw and Collared Dove.
BISON HILL (WHIPSNADE) has seen its best-ever year for emerging butterflies, quite possibly due to the extensive scrub clearance on the Chiltern slopes. Today, butterflies were everywhere, with transects producing 84 DUKE OF BURGUNDY, at least 105 DINGY SKIPPER, 76 GREEN HAIRSTREAK, 4 Orange-Tip and 5 GRIZZLED SKIPPER. Birdlife included 4 singing male Common Whitethroat, a singing male Garden Warbler, 2 Willow Warbler, Yellowhammer, 2 Linnet, Green Woodpecker and singing Robin.
In the DUKE GULLY on IVINGHOE, a further 17 DUKE OF BURGUNDY counted, as well as several GREEN HAIRSTREAK and DINGY SKIPPER - Meadow Pipit displaying, 2 Linnet and singing male Common Whitethroat.
in CHURCH END, PITSTONE, at least 8 House Sparrow, Wren and Common Chiffchaff, with neighbouring PITSTONE MEADOW harbouring Bullfinch (pair), Green Woodpecker, Blackcap and 5 Skylark, as well as 3 SMALL BLUE butterflies, 12 DINGY SKIPPER and 4 GREEN HAIRSTREAK.
Little Egret on RIVER CHESS just east of BOIS MILL and up to 3 BADGERS visiting/residing in my CHAFFINCH HOUSE garden every night