Saturday 26 July 2014

Arable Weeds, Chalkhill Blues and A Few Local Bits 'n' Bobs

I've been out quite a bit lately on my days off but just haven't had the time to post anything on here, I shouldn't keep allowing it to build up as it results in massive posts that take me ages. Oh well, here goes. Last Sunday I visited two sites over the border in Somerset looking for new plants and in particular rare 'arable weeds'. Firstly I visited Fivehead Arable Fields a Somerset Wildlife Trust reserve and later in the day Lytes Cary Manor run by the National Trust. I didn't see everything I'd hoped to but did manage to see several of my target species plus lots of other less rare species.

Fivehead Arable Fields

Shepherd's NeedleScandix pecten-veneris

Broad-leaved SpurgeEuphorbia platyphyllos

Dwarf Spurge - Euphorbia exigua

Spreading Hedge Parsley - Torilis arvensis

Slender TareVicia parviflora

Round-leaved FluellenKickxia spuria 

Narrow-fruited CornsaladValerianella dentata

Field Madder -Sherardia arvensis

Meadow Vetchling - Lathyrus pratensis

Wild Basil - Satureja vulgaris

 Cultivated Flax - Linum usitatissimum

 This was growing in one of the fields on the Lytes Cary estate where all the arable fields have broad headlands. I was a bit late in the season though and I didn't see many arable weeds, the very dry conditions didn't help either. 

Grass Vetchling - Lathyrus nissolia

Arrowhead - Sagittaria sagittifolia on the River Cary.

 On Monday I when to Portland to look for Chalkhill Blues, there were quite a lot on the wing, with 'on the wing' being the appropriate phrase because they didn't stop that often. It's never easy trying to get photos of butterflies in very hot and sunny conditions and even when they did pitch it was usually with wings closed.

Chalkhill Blue Polyommatus coridon

Courtship Action Shot

Female Broad-bodied Chaser - Libellula depressa  

A few bits from the garden.

 Common Blue - Polyommatus icarus

Eristalinus sepulchralis 

Banded General Soldier Fly - Stratiomys potamida

 A Token Bird.
 A smashing Wood Sandpiper on Black Hole Marsh first thing this morning, one of two in the valley, the other being on Colyford scrape. Hopefully one will come near enough for a better photo before the end of the autumn.


Unknown said...

Wow, I am envious of the Stratiomys potamida. I presume this was on Portland or was it in the Seaton environs? Pray do tell!

Karen Woolley said...

It was in my garden in Seaton. I live pretty near to Seaton Marshes which is where I presumed it originated. A marshland species isn't it?

Unknown said...

Thanks Karen. Yes, it probably came from the non-brackish areas of the marshes. I was considering a trip down to the Seaton area as I have not been for some time.