31 Jul 2016

Broad-leaved Helliborine

Jan & I have just had a relaxing week in Majorca celebrating her mum's 80th with the rest of the family. Although I didn't do much birding, as usual, I took my binoculars with me and managed a few good birds in the pine covered slopes adjacent to our hotel. Sardinian Warbler, Crossbill & Audouins Gull were all relatively common & I also managed a Hoopoe flying over the sea from one side of the bay to another. Spotted Flycatchers were perhaps the commonest species in the resort with lots of juveniles around. It was good to see House Martins doing well nesting on the side of the hotel as well.

Arriving back Friday we both woke early Saturday morning as our body clocks were still on 'Majorca time' - we'd got into the habit of waking early and spending an hour lazing around on the beach before breakfast and before it got to hot. Consequently we woke up at 06.30 Saturday morning and decided to walk off some of the over indulgence. Following one of our usual routes from home to the nearby village of Mollington things were depressingly quiet on the bird front. Its that time of year when all the adults are moulting and the juveniles have dispersed.

Walking back along a shaded part of the cycle path that I hadn't walked very much recently as I tend to take the alternative route around the field margin looking for butterflies my brain registered an orchid species.....................Having a hunch of what it was, although  I hadn't seen one for years, I took a quick photo and sent it to Sean Cole who confirmed my suspicions - it was my first local Broad-leaved Helliborine!

I went back this morning with the macro lens and found a bonus two more flower stalks. Photography  was hard as I didn't take a tripod and I was shooting at F3.5 and a shutter speed of 1/30th of a second due to the shaded nature of the site.

Walking home in the sunshine I had the added bonus of seeing my 2nd local Painted Lady of the year and a late Speckled Wood.

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