Thursday, 25 May 2017

La Brenne - Deuxieme jour


Day 2 began much the same as the first day, bright sunshine with clear blue skies and the promise  of high temperatures.

Étang Ricot

We had a cracking start in the car park of Etang Ricot, both Melodious Warbler and Bonelli's Warbler singing their heads off in the nearby trees. 

The hide here is split level and we started on the lower level but soon moved up for better views of a Great Reed Warbler. Out in the pond the obligatory sunken log had a resident "Cistude" or European Pond Tortoise or  Turtle.

Then great excitement as we were provided with distant views of two Black Storks circling high over the reserve, unfortunately not even close enough for a record.

Photographic opportunities were few and far between and I was tempted into a distant shot of a Four Spot Chaser and soon after left the hide to investigate the margins of the pond. White-legged Damselflies were emerging in good numbers so most of the records were of tenerals, the adults seemed to have left for the meadows surrounding the pond.

White-legged Damselfly


White-legged Damselfly
White-legged Damselfly


White-legged Damselfly

Étang Mouton

As we arrived we were greeted by a Hoopoe but it didn't stay for long, decamping to the other side of the pond, although later, as we were having our picnic it returned and gave everyone a good view. The circumnavigation of the pond gave a single butterfly but some nice damselflies. Birds were difficult to spot but we did hear both Great and Middle Spotted Woodpeckers

Sooty Copper

Green-eyed or Norfolk Hawker

Small Red Damselfly

White-legged Damselfly

During lunch a Scarce Swallowtail flew through and I chased it with the camera, now this is another bogey for me, scarce they are not but I have struggled to see them. Just my luck that when I finally get to photograph one it has its tail missing, probably due to a bird. Never mind, I was pleased to see it.


Rosnay Fairground

Mid afternoon we visited Rosnay Fairground, a wonderful meadow in the middle of the town. By now the temperatures were well up and the butterflies manic, but I managed to capture Knapweed Fritillary and Spotted Fritillary, both of which seemed to be everywhere. I found one Lax-flowered Orchid and one Marsh Orchid, I had the feeling that there should have been more but I was concentrating on chasing high speed butterflies.




Étang Cistude

A visit to the Maison de la nature et de la Réserve where we met the famous Tony WIlliams, a mine of information. At long last I finally managed to capture some reasonable shots of a Purple Heron, a bird that has been a bit of a bogey for me. I have seen loads in Spain but never got close.

A Great White Egret breezed in and commenced feeding but didn't come near to the hide.


 A Pochard asked for its photograph to be taken - so I had to oblige.

A couple of Great Crested Grebe youngsters waited patiently to be fed but I failed to capture the parents returning with a fish.

The area around the boardwalk to the hide was alive with damselflies.

Large Red-eyed Damselfly

La Grenouille

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