I saw our first returning migrant swallow yesterday (I have not checked but this seems very early) and we had a reed bunting on the feeders.
Meanwhile despite showers I put the moth trap out on Thursday night with a catch of 19 moths in total of which there were 5 species, Hebrew Character, Clouded Drab, Red Chestnut and these two, a Common Quaker and an Early Grey moth.
|Tick Biting Parts|
I took a walk over the grazings last Tuesday to Loch nam Madadh Uisge, (literally 'fox water') a small lochan above Luib, where there will be lots of water lobelia later this summer. Flowering bog myrtle was everywhere and a few sedges and rushes were beginning to flower. I also picked up my first deer tick of the year. Potentially they can carry Lyme disease. I used to spray ticks which had bitten into my flesh by spraying them with after shave (or cheap perfume, if closer to hand). The alcohol solvent causes them to loosen their grip and they can be picked off with tweasers. However the local chemist in Portree cautioned against this approach because the spray can cause the tick to vomit and increase the risk of pathogens entering the bite. So now I use a little prong which slides under the tick and a quick twist then removes it. I have lost the packaging but I think the brand name is the O'Tom Tick Twister. It works most of the time but is far less satisfying than seeing the tick visibly unhappy with the alcohol spray, and the chance for some serious revenge.