Latest Sightings May 2022

Click on the link to send in your sightings info@foteb.org.uk to help us monitor Emm Brook wildlife.This type of ‘citizen science’ allows us to get a clearer picture of what is happening along the Emm.

For previous months sightings see Archive

The "Area Seen" refers to the 11 sections that the Brook has been split into for monitoring purposes (see Wildlife page under Monitoring ).

For what you can expect to see on the Emm this month, click here May

All sightings unless stated are from personal observations by Eddie Napper.


Click on any picture to see a larger image

What is this life if full of care , we have no time to stand and stare.

Leisure - W. H. Davies.

Birds

What is the Dawn Chorus

21/05/22 2 Canada Goose flew over my Area 4 garden honking at 05:40 this morning..

19/05/22 Feeding over my Area 4 garden at 20:00 were 4 Swift .

16/05/22 A Raven was seen over Area 4 circling high West towards Reading Road at midday by Paul Bright Thomas.

15/05/22 Starling I threw out a couple of old slices of bread in my Area 4 garden to have it immeadiatly devoured by House Sparrow and an Adult Starling feeding a juvenile .

14/05/22 Low over my Area 4 garden this afternoon 2 Swift were feeding. Paul O'Neill was out again in Area 7A and saw a male and female Whitethroat in Ashridge Meadows, 4 House Martin visiting nests at Copsewood, and in Area 8, 2 female Wheatear on fenceposts beside the North Wokingham Distributor Road.

13/05/22 Paul O'Neill was out in Area 7A and saw a male Skylark singing over Ashridge Meadows, 2 male Whitethroat one singing from the East hedgerow, the other from gorse/trees at the West boundary, and a male Reed Bunting singing from the reeds in the East pond.A Little Egret was seen feeding in the Ashridge Stream at junction of Old Forest Rd and Toutley Rd In Area 8 and a female Wheatear was seen on a house roof off Queens Road. Same area as one seen on roofs last year on 11 May.

11/05/22 Bringing in the Moth trap at 05:15 this morning and a formation of 5 Mallard were seen flying over my Area 4 garden.

08/05/22 In Area 10 a Whitethroat was singing near the Dinton Activity and a Common Tern was also seen by Anne Cronin.

07/05/22 Grey Wagtail Seen during the litter pick by Dragonfly Bridge in Area 5 was a Grey Wagtail . It appears to have a beak full of food. It must be nesting nearby.

06/05/22 A trip to the Carpark field in Area 10 produced 3 Hobby feeding over the field and the Old Golf Course. Also seen were singing male Blackcap , Garden Warbler , a calling Green Woodpecker a Song Thrush and a Cuckoo in full song.

05/05/22 Paul O'Neill was back again at Old Forest Road Meadows in Area 8 and today saw a pair of Grey Wagtail around the balancing pond.

04/05/22 Seen by Paul O'Neill at Old Forest Road Meadows in Area 8 were a singing male Garden Warbler and a singing male Lesser Whitethroat .2 Swift were also seen by Paul Bright Thomas in Area 4.

03/05/22 In Area 10 on the beach by the Dinton Activity Center a Common Sandpiper was seen by Andy Dearing.

02/05/22 Little Egret In the Emm Brook by Dragonfly Bridge in Area 5 a feeding Little Egret was flushed into the tree tops before flying upstream.

01/05/22 The first Sunday of May is International Dawn Chorus Day. Its the worldwide celebration of nature's greatest symphony. All across the world people rise early to revel in the sweet sound of birdsong. Along the Emm Brook the early risers are Robin , Blackbird and Song Thrush which can all be herard from 05:00 onwards.They are then joined a bit later by Collared Dove , Wood Pigeon and House Sparrow . Seen later in the day after my early rising, flying around over the Emm Brook were 3 Swift and 5 Swallow in Area 10

Insects

20/05/22 Elephant Hawk Moth Following a few missed nights due to the weather the moth trap was out overnight on 19/05/22 in my Area 4 garden and emptied this morning.It produced my best catch so far with 52 moths of 25 species caught .  Angle Shades The highlights were my first Elephant Hawk Moth Deilephila elpenor , Angle Shades Agapeta hamana and the appropriately named Scorched Wing Plagodis dolabraria of the year. Scorched Wing With a total of 10 first's for the year added this brings the FOTEB Moth list for 2022 to 76 species.Following inspection and recording/photographing anything caught was released.

14/05/22 Flame Carpet The moth trap was out overnight on 13/05/22 in my Area 4 garden and emptied this morning. For some unknown reason there was a dip in numbers with 11 moths of 11 species caught ( maybe the full moon played a part) .  Yarrow Conch The highlights were my first Flame Carpet Xanthorhoe designata and the micro moth Yarrow Conch Agapeta hamana of the year. With a total of 2 first's for the year added this brings the FOTEB Moth list for 2022 to 66 species.Following inspection and recording/photographing anything caught was released. Large Red Damselfly Paul Hopcraft was in Area 5 and saw a Large Red Damselfly Pyrrhosoma nymphula Azure Damselfly and an Azure Damselfly Coenagrion puella on the riverside vegetation. Hairy Dragonfly In Area 10 a Hairy Dragonfly Brachytron pratense was seen by Alan Rymer. This is the earliest dragonfly to emerge in the UK, it is on the wing from May to July. Photo courtesy of Alan Rymer.

12/05/22  Cardinal Beetle In the Area 10 Car park field at lunchtime, the sun was shining and the Insects were out . A  Common Malachite Beetle Cardinal Beetle Pyrochroa serraticornis was on the vegetation. a Common Malachite Beetle Aethalura punctulata stood out on a Meadow Buttercup and a Green Dock Beetle Gastrophysa viridula . Green Dock Beetle Once this buisness has been completed, the female lays about 1,000 eggs Green Dock Beetle Eggs in batches of 25-40 on the underside of the Dock Leaf.

11/05/22 Grey Birch The moth trap was out overnight on (10/05/22)in my Area 4 garden and emptied this morning. Totals were 24 moths of 13 species caught .  Coxcomb Prominent The highlights were my first Coxcomb Prominent Ptilodon capucina of the year. Typically this species is a rich chestnut colour with a tuft of creamy hairs on the thorax. When at rest it is well camouflaged and, if handled, feigns death. a Grey Birch Aethalura punctulata and a Green Carpet Acronicta alni. Green Carpet With a total of 4 first's for the year added this brings the FOTEB Moth list for 2022 to 64 species.Following inspection and recording/photographing anything caught was released.

09/05/22 Wasp Beetle On the vegetation by the bridge over the Emm Brook in Area 10 was a Wasp Beetle Clytus arietis A clever mimic, the wasp beetle is black-and-yellow and moves in a jerky, flight-like fashion - fooling predators into thinking it is actually a more harmful common wasp rather than a longhorn beetle.

08/05/22 Lime Hawk Moth With the warm weather continuing the moth trap was out overnight on (07/05/22)in my Area 4 garden and emptied this morning. It produced another reasonable total with 25 moths of 18 species . Alder Moth The highlights were my first Lime Hawk Moth Mimas tiliae of the year and a Least Black Arches Nola confusalis and a Alder Moth Acronicta alni. Least Black Arches With a total of 5 first's for the year added this brings the FOTEB Moth list to 60 species for the year.Following inspection and recording/photographing anything caught was released.

06/05/22  Alder Moth. The moth trap was out overnight on (05/05/22)in my Area 4 garden and emptied this morning. It produced the best totals of the year with 31 moths of 17 species . The highlights were another Micro Moth Caloptilia robustella - alchimiella agg , Orange Footman Wittia sororcula and a Lesser Swallow Prominent Pheosia gnoma. Lesser Swallow Prominent Esperia sulphurella With a total of 7 first's for the year added this brings the FOTEB Moth list to 55 species for the year. Following inspection and recording/photographing anything caught was released.

With the sun shining I decided to visit Area 10 in the afternoon to look for Damselflies. I was rewarded with Common Blue Damselfly Enallagma cyathigerum , Large Red Damselfly Pyrrhosoma nymphula, Banded Demoiselle Calopteryx splendens and a Blue-tailed Damselfly Ischnura elegans all on the same patch of vegetation on the banks of the Emm Brook.

05/05/22 Seen flying across my Area 4 garden in the sunshine were Holly Blue Celastrina argiolus and Large White Pieris brassicae Butterflies.

02/05/22 Glyphotaelius pellucidus As a by product of moth trapping there are often other Insects that are attracted to the moth trap light . Ophion obscuratus agg  2 Glyphotaelius pellucidus Caddisflies were lured in with a Ichneumon wasp Ophion obscuratus agg last night.

01/05/22 Great Prominent The moth trap was out overnight on (30/04/22)in my Area 4 garden and emptied this morning. Caught were 23 moths of 12 species . The highlights were Great Prominent Peridea anceps with a wingspan of 50-65mm down to the Micro Moth Esperia sulphurella Esperia sulphurella with a wingspan of 12-16mm . A total of 6 first's for the year were added .This brings the FOTEB Moth list to 48 species for the year. Following inspection and recording/photographing anything caught was released. <

Plants/ Trees

01/05/22 Comfry Comfry Symphytum officinale in all its variety of clusters of purple, blue, and white flowers can now be seen along the Emm Brook.

Fungi Do not eat any fungi that have not been properly identified , some are DEADLY when ingested .

Amphibians and Reptiles

06/05/22 Whilst watching Damselflies from the Bridge over the Emm Brook adjacent to the Car Park field in Area 10 a Grass Snake Natrix natrix was seen sunning its self on the bank before slithering off into the bankside vegetation.

Mammals

11/05/22 In Area 4 a Red Fox Vulpes vulpes was heard calling at 02:30.

06/05/22 Rabbit Feeding in the Area 10 Car Park field were young Rabbit Oryctolagus cuniculus.

Fish/ Crustaceans

Molluscs

01/05/22 Wite lipped Snail On the vegetation in Area 10 was a White lipped Snail Cepaea hortensis .