September 2017

30th. 2 ring-necked parakeets at Coworth Park, Berkshire, and at least 3 red kites en route.

14-18th. Tuscany. Rain arrived at long last, temperatures have dropped, and the landscape came alive again with life. The forests looked less orange than they did in August.

Pianezze

Pianezze

Pianezze

Pianezze

We went for a great circular walk from Padonchia back to Lucie's house.

near Padonchia

near Padonchia

Monterchi from Padonchia

The meadows are yellow in places with swards of common toadflax.

common toadflax

common toadflax

We filmed wild boar, porcupines, fox and badger on the camera traps. It was great to watch the red squirrels eating walnuts the size of their heads from Lucie's front door. They come in a range of shades, from the red ones we are used to in the UK, through to individuals with a lot of black on them. Introduced grey squirrels have eradicated reds over large areas of northern Italy, and a population of greys was accidentally introduced into Perugia (Umbria), not far from Monterchi, in the early 2000s. I hope they don't spread and wipe out the beautiful red squirrels of Tuscany.

red squirrel

red squirrel

red squirrel

A flock of about 70 bee-eaters migrated over the house, first detected by their calls.

bee-eaters

Insects included praying mantises, robber flies, and rose chafers.

praying mantis

praying mantis

robber fly

rose chafer

Jersey tigers and great-banded graylings are still are on the wing.

Jersey tiger

great-banded grayling

This unidentified fritillary had a damaged wing - is it a high-brown (from the shape of the forewing)?

fritillary sp.

Blue butterflies included Adonis, chalk-hill, common, brown argus and sooty copper.

Adonis blue

chalk-hill blue

common blue

brown argus

sooty copper

January 2017February 2017March 2017April 2017May 2017June 2017July 2017August 2017October 2017.html