The regular reader of this blog, if such there be, will know that I anxiously await the emergence of Little Owls from a hole on a tree-stump, as they have done for the past three years. Today they did, so that's four years on the trot. And again, there's two of them.
The young Tawny Owl continues to stay in or near the garden after dark, wheezing gently until an adult arrives calling, when it understandably gets excited and wheezes faster.
An transect over the beach in the warmth of early morning counted 148 Marbled Whites, down on the 200 this time last year but doubtless more will have hatched during the day.
Marbled Whites, like Ringlets, lay their eggs on the wing, letting them fall into the grass which the caterpillars will munch until autumn. After hibernation they will resume their feeding until June, when they pupate and emerge a year after the eggs were laid.
Last year, 200 Marbled Whites emerged, mated and laid their eggs, and they have hatched together this year. Marvellous, isn't it? And another sign of high summer - Chickory, which to my uncertain knowledge is confined to a small verge near Mongeham and is spreading along the A2 towards Canterbury.