Bird Meeting at Blackgang 24th July 2022

Eight members met at Blackgang viewpoint car park for a walk led by Jim Baldwin. An overcast start with sunshine later in the morning although a brisk wind kept temperatures down. A Blackcap was heard in the car park before we set off along the path at Gore Cliff. A brief sea-watch at Blackgang produced the only Gannet of the morning, along with Black-headed Gull, Herring Gull and Great Black-backed Gull. Two Peregrines were seen briefly flying along the edge of the cliff. C.140 corvids (c.80 Jackdaw, c.30 Carrion Crow and c.30 Rook) were observed in an adjacent field which had flowering Ragwort so a likely food source of caterpillars and other insects. Passerines were in small number with only two Linnet and four Goldfinch representing the finches and a couple of Skylark was seen plus a solitary Swallow. We continued along the path until we were adjacent to St Catherine’s lighthouse and then opted to return along the same route rather than walk inland. Two Ravens were seen and heard on our way back to the car park.18 bird species were recorded during an enjoyable morning which also produced a good count of over 20 Wall butterflies which appeared to be newly emerged. Other butterflies seen were 6 Marbled White, 4 Common Blue, 2 Large White and singles of Painted Lady and Small Copper. Also recorded were single 6-spot Burnet and Jersey Tiger moths plus two caterpillars of the Cinnabar moth on ragwort. A couple of Bloody-nosed Beetles were also observed.

Jim Baldwin

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