18th June


Deforested Heath. I find this area fascinating - perhaps it's my favourite local spot. Three years ago this hill-top was a dense Spruce plantation with occasional access roads. Then 2 years ago it was harvested, leaving a bare hill-top with some tree stumps and sawdust. Since then it has been replanted with Japanese Larch, but the whole area is rapidly reverting to heath. The drainage gulleys are now dryish streams with water plants. The road area is bordered with all the usual heath-type plants and insects (examples below), and the ground is covered in heathers, rushes, mosses, heaths and coniferous seedlings in addition to the newly-planted Larches. Willows are dotted around where there were access roads. This area is just west (say 500m) of the original hedgerow, but a good deal higher.


Sunny periods in a wet day.


I'm currently preparing a piece on the local Dactylorhiza orchids, and I noticed this Green-veined White as I was looking for suitable orchid specimens.


One of the side access roads is a good source of lichens and fungi. I spotted this very clean Peltigera lactucifolia growing through some grasses.

Another Forget-Me-Not - this time the Water Forget-Me-Not. This was growing in a ditch and has much larger (8,9mm) flowers than the Tufted I showed on Wednesday.


This is a new one to me (and growing directly in a stream - so a tricky photo). I think it's a water speedwell, and the colour of the stems and flowers indicate the Pink Water Speedwell - Veronica catenata. I'll need to monitor the buds.

On further analysis it turns out to be Veronica scutellinia - Marsh Speedwell.

This picture was taken at the lower end of the access road. It's the Narrow-Bordered Bee Hawkmoth. If you've ever seen one of these you'll know that they never stop for more than a second at a time. I just managed to catch this one as it hovered with its long tongue in the Herb Robert flower.

I'd like to call this the Autumn Hawkbit, but it seems a bit early. Still, it's only 12 days until July.



The leaves are very different from those of the Cat's-Ear:


I found this empty moth chrysalis on a dead reed. I strongly suspect it belongs to the Drinker Moth. The shape and size are right, and I've seen the caterpillars near enough to the spot. About 3 cm tall.

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