Sunday 28 June 2009

There's One, There! ...Oh It's Gone!

This was the oft heard exchange of words today between Bun and me when we visited Ashclyst Forest near Exeter to look for White Admirals. We did see some I'm pleased to say. In fact we saw at least seven of the gorgeous creatures, but would they land, would they ...! Actually we did get two brief perched (do butterflies perch) views but they were high in the treetops. At one point one toyed with me by flying slowly right around my legs, about a couple of inches off the ground, sniggering to itself no doubt. I enjoyed a great view but no photos...this time! I'll be back! We also saw about eight Silver-washed Fritillaries and a few other odds and sods, which was all pretty amazing considering that it was raining a lot of the time and we never saw the sun once. I haven't much time to write this evening so I'll just annotate some photos from today.

Ooh look! Ashclyst Forest is owned by my favourite charity,
good job it's free or I'd be a bit of a hypocrite!

Silver-washed Fritillary, definitely one of my favourites,
I mean ... Just look at them!

Male Ringlet

Also what seems to be my specialty of late. A mating pair.

To counteract all that beauty what about this.
It's a Robber Fly a Neoitamus cyanurus most probably ( I looked it up in a book)
Whatever it's called it's a teeny bit hideous!

A fungus:
None of my books could help me with this one. Any mycologists out there? It's a slimy gelatinous type one, looked a bit like it was once a chicken korma, if you get my drift.

EDIT I've been kindly informed by Maurice (thanks! :-) ) That this is in fact a slime mould called Fuligo septica, more commonly known as Dog Vomit Slime Mould, perfect description methinks. Just 'say what you see'! :-)

A des res?
I know of at least one reader who'll really appreciate the inclusion of this photo of a stunning, light, airy and deceptively spacious, executive style shed.

After leaving Ashclyst Forest we decided to pop in at Alyesbeare Common to look for Dartford Warblers. We didn't see any but heard one call once. It was very quite bird wise as you'd expect. I was highly entertained though by a colony of Wood Ants. I tried to take a few photos which turned out to be a lot trickier than I'd supposed.

Here some of them are carrying off a green caterpillar. They didn't appreciate the closeness of my lens and one of them came over to warn me off!

It 'adopted the position' and showed me its fearsome jaws...I stood my ground.

Then it got nasty and squirted formic acid at my camera. Cool!!

Later while walking Rex in Morganhayes Wood I took a close up photo of this Slender St.John's Wort flower. I'd never noticed the tiny little black specks around the petals before.

Finally just to add a bird photo, here's one I took whilst walking Rex yesterday in a green lane near to Rousdon, another Yellowhammer in fine voice as usual!


Anonymous said...

Great shed, even comes with its own rooftop garden, make a great second home :-)

Anonymous said...


The yellow stuff is a slime mould - Fuligo septica



Karen Woolley said...

Anonymous - Knew you'd like it ;-)

Maurice - Thanks for the ID. Not even a real fungus then. Love the common name - entirely accurate. I'll amened my caption forthwith! :-)

Anonymous said...

Excellent photos, once again, Karen. The Wood Ant pics are superb.
You`re right about SWF`s, such beautiful butters.