The Year Is Moving On

Sunday, January 29th 2017

Stacey has reached about half way through her time down at Signy and her chicks are growing up.  This is a Chinstrap penguin, which is getting quite big.  She says they are comical and cute and I must agree with her.  She has named the photograph Chinnie and I think it suits him (or her) well.

Chinstrap Penguin

I received this information from Stacey.  'The photo below is of the Adelie Penguins.  If you look at them closely you'll see many of them have lost lots of the fluffy grey down, and the white and blue/grey feathers are showing underneath. They should start fledging this week. I can't believe its got to fledging time already!  I must get over to Gourlay to count my chicks. At this time of year I have to go over every couple of days to count the Adelie chicks in a certain few colonies- once they start to decrease in number I know they've started fledging.' 

The Adelie Penguins

Down south the days are shortening and the chicks are fledging.  Here our days are lengthening and although the reserve is still in its winter colours of grey, brown and black there are signs that spring is approaching.  No flowers yet other than Gorse and Daisy, but the leaves of two Cuckoo Pint were spotted yesterday.  Not in their usual place.

Cuckoo Pint leaves

A flower that grows abundantly through Foxglove is Greater Stitchwort and its leaves are showing through the leaf litter.  

Greater Stitchwort leaves

Some moths are on the wing for several months while others only appear for a short time.  This Pale Brindled Beauty had taken up residence by the door on the front veranda.  Its flight season is from January through to March.  The larval food plants include Hawthorn, Blackthorn, Apple, Downy and Silver Birch, Alder, Hazel and Ash.

Pale Brindled Beauty


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