Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Catch Up on some Oversley Wood Sightings

Visited Oversley Wood in Warks yesterday morning (Monday 22nd July), for about an hour, and was pleased to see Emperors still flying above the perimeter track to the east and south of the wood.

All activity, which was concentrated into a 20 minute period beginning at 11:20, was as follows:
11:20 - 1 Emp flying around the top of a Sallow on east ride near the junction with south ride
11:29 - 1 male Emp flew into and perched in an Oak tree about 12 feet up, at the corner junction of east and south rides. Plus a flyby at the same time by a separate Emp.
11:30 - 1 Emp flying around same Sallow on east ride near junction with south ride
11:35 - 1 Emp flyby at head height towards the eastern end of the south ride
11:40 - 1 Emp flyby mid-way down south ride

As I've only just got logged onto the Purple Empire for the first time, I've also included some notes from earlier 2013 excursions to Oversley.

Thursday 18th July
1 flyby on the south ride at 1432 but no other sightings around the perimeter track so I walked up to the congregation area, at the highest point of the wood. Had 20 separate 'flight sightings' up amongst the tops of the pines there over a 22 minute period from 1447, involving a total 'seen count' of 32 Emperors. Think these flights represented a minimum of 9 separate individuals. All sightings bar two were at the extreme eastern end of the area, with the remaining two in the middle part.

Saturday 13th July
Visited Oversley Wood this morning for the fourth time since Tuesday, spurred on by the large number of sightings on both Wednesday and Thursday.

Arrived at abut 10, in full sun, and it was already hot - around 25C. Walked up the track from the car park on the usual route, turning left at 'the triangle' and following the track around the south side of the wood. There were several other people already searching and they had all seen HIM. One guy from Stourbridge reported that he had got to the wood at 9:30, had an immediate sighting on the track near the car park, and had already seen 10 separate individuals by 10:15.

My sightings were as follows:

10:15 : 1 male feeding on low growing vegetation beside the track - mid-way down the east ride

10:25 : 1 male flying low over the track, skimming the ground but not landing - mid-way down the south-ride

At 10:35 I decided to pay a short visit up to the congregation area, just to check there was no activity up there. Waited around for 10 minutes but with no sightings there, returned back down to the perimeter track.

10:49 : 1 male feeding on bracken just off the track - towards the western end of the south-ride

11:14 : 2 males, one low (7 foot?) in an oak feeding on honeydew, another close by down on track, briefly, then flying off down track in an easterly direction, stopping for a second or two at regular intervals - mid-way down south-ride

11:41 : 1 male flying high amongst oaks near 'the triangle' (junction of east-ride and track up from car park)

11:59 : 1 male flying high amongst oaks - mid-way down east-ride

12:19 : 1 male flying over track, at head height, occasionally skimming the grouind - mid-way down the north-ride

At 12:30 I returned to the congregation area, figuring that as activity down on the track was rapidly diminishing, then the emperors would have returned up-the-hill. As soon as I reached the top I saw one flying around the top of a pine, about 30 metres away from the eastern-end of the 'congregation area path'

Further sightings as follows - all at the extreme eastern end and all flying high around the tops of the pines:

12:45 - 2 flying together plus a third about 5 metres away
12:46 - 1 flying for 5-10 seconds in canopy
12:47 - 1 flying around in the wood, slightly lower - around half-way up from ground level to canopy
12:49 - 1 flying for about 5 seconds then immediately after, 2 sparring together
12:50 - 1 flying for 5-10 seconds in canopy

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