Friday, 18 December 2015

Wildflowers and Insects in The New Forest

Here's a selection of wildflowers from this summer in the New Forest and a few insects too.




Yellow Centaury - Cicendia filiformis



Coral Necklace - Illecebrum verticillatum




Ivy-leaved Bellflower Wahlenbergia hederacea 




Bog OrchidHammarbya paludosa


White Beak-sedge - Rhynchospora alba


Least Water-pepper - Persicaria minor


Lesser Bladderwort - Utricularia minor


New Forest Bladderwort - Utricularia bremii


 Autumn Ladies Tresses - Spiranthes spiralis




Field Gentian - Gentianella campestris
  

Southern Damselfly - Coenagrion mercuriale


Minotaur Beetle - Typhaeus typhoeus


Hornet Robber Fly - Asilus crabroniformis.

Thursday, 17 December 2015

Purbeck Inverts

As promised a follow up to my Wildflowers of Purbeck post, mostly featuring invertebrates. No birds I'm afraid. Apart from plenty of Dartford Warblers I didn't really see any of note.

Adonis Blues on Ballard Down
 

This must be the most colourful female Adonis Blue that I've ever seen.


This is the latest Silver-studded Blue that I've seen (August 16th).



Brown Argus


Clouded Yellow hiding on a stem of Yellow-wort. 
Very effective camouflage. I'd never have noticed it if I hadn't watched it land there.

Small Tortoiseshell on Fox and Cubs


Lulworth Skipper

Cinnabar Moth Caterpillars



The European Beewolf - Philanthus triangulum


Long-winged Conehead - Conocephalus discolor
Female of the uncommon brown form.



Male Large Marsh Grasshopper - Stethophyma grossum


Female Large Marsh Grasshopper - Stethophyma grossum



Roesel's bush-cricket - Metrioptera roeselii


Female Sand Lizard  - Lacerta agilis
Yes, I know it's not an invert but one reptile didn't really warrant a mention in the title.


Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Wildflowers of Purbeck

I've spent a lot of time in the Purbeck region of Dorset this summer with my friend Andy who knows the area very well and I've seen lots of new plants. Here are a few of them and also a few I've seen before but warranted a photo none the less. I've also seen quite a few butterflies and other wildlife in the region which will follow in my next post.


A spectacular display of Common Centaury


This is the lighthouse at Anvil Point near Durlston Head. On the windswept short turf around it one can find a variety of Common Centaury which is adapted to the harsh environment by becoming very low growing with stemless flowers.



Tufted Centaury - Centaurium erythraea var. capitatum


The view looking west from Emmetts Hill. This is the stunning setting for a plant I'd been unsuccessfully looking for for a while. Easier when you know someone who knows where it is!


This is it in the foreground. White Horehound, not the most spectacular of plants but there's something about it I like. Don't know what it is though!



White Horehound - Marrubium vulgare


Corfe Castle
On this hill overlooking the village we saw a couple of different species of St John's Wort



 Perforate St. John's Wort - Hypericum perforatum
One of the commonest St. John's Worts but deserving of a photo for the backdrop alone. We also (after a fair bit of searching) saw the much less common species...



Pale St.John's Wort - Hypericum montanum


This is the Swanage Railway and along this embankment can be found Pale Toadflax and its rare hybrids with Purple Toadflax and Common Toadflax


 Pale Toadflax - Linaria repens


Common x Pale Toadflax  - hybrid  Linaria x sepium (L. vulgaris x repens)



Purple x Pale Toadflax - hybrid Linaria x dominii (L.purpurea x repens)



Corky-fruited Water Dropwort - Oenanthe pimpinelloides




Elecampane - Inula helenium
Some of the plants in this impressive clump were over seven feet tall!



Knotted Hedge Parsley - Torilis nodosa



Nettle-leaved Bellflower - Campanula trachelium



Fringed Water Lily - Nymphoides peltata



Thorn Apple - Datura stramonium

 

Wormwood - Artemisia absinthium


Vervain - Verbena officinalis
  

Cross-leaved Heath - Erica tetralix
A very pretty pale pink form. 



Dorset Heath - Erica ciliaris 



Yellow Bartsia - Parentucellia viscosa



Yellow Centaury - Cicendia filiformis 
Even though the sun was shining we were too late in the day to see the flowers of this tiny plant open. They only open in full sun and usually before midday. Fortunately we caught up with some open flowers in the New Forest at a later date, photos of which I'll put on here in the near future.