August 2021

27th. More autumn lady's tresses, this time in Ashton Court, west of the track dividing the golf course. Himalayan balsam is widespread and in flower.

26th. Great to see the autumn lady's tresses in flower on the Downs now. They are pollinated by bees, and one landed on a flower spike while we were there.

autumn lady's tresses

autumn lady's tresses

autumn lady's tresses

autumn lady's tresses

22nd. I used to be sceptical about the great bustard reintroduction project, but now there are about 100 birds and about 20 females laying eggs on Salisbury Plain it is looking promising. Bustards were extirpated from Wiltshire almost 200 years ago, and the bird is the crest on the county's coat of arms.

Salisbury Plain

Great bustards

7th-13th. Cornwall.

13th: St Ives Island (07.45-09.15): 1 sooty shearwater, 5 Balearic shearwater, ca. 10,000 Manx shearwater.  

Balearic and Mnx shearwater

12th: St Ives Island (07.45-09.15): 4 sooty Shearwater, 10 Balearic shearwater, ca. 10,000 Manx shearwater, 1 Sandwich tern, 1 Mediterranean gull.

11th: (07.30-08.30): 6 common scoter W, 3 little egret E, 1 sooty shearwater

10th. At least 5 common dolphins off the Island.

9th. (09.00-10.15) Three sooty and at least 2 Balearic shearwaters from the Island, and an ocean sunfish too. We then walked from Godrevy to Hell's Mouth cafe and back.

Lots of butterflies feeding along the coast path, including small tortoiseshell, painted lady and small copper. We saw a tatty green-veined fritillary too.

Small tortoiseshell

Pained ladies

Small copper

The display of saw-wort and golden rod was stunning.

Godrevy

Saw-wort and sea carrot

Godrevy

And some more plants:

Angelica

Angelica

Devil's bit scabious

Devil's bit scabious

Devil's bit scabious

Common toadflax

Cojmmon toadflax

We also saw rock sea spurry.

8th. Lizard peninsula with Kurt and Adrian. doing the usual circuit from Kynance. Our aim was to see the Cornish heath, found only on the Lizard in Britain, and autumn squill. Both were at a good stage of flowering.

Kynance Cove

Cornish heath Erica vagans

Cornish heath

Cornish heath

Cornish heath

Cornish heath

Cornish heath

Two other members of the Ericaceae, bell heather Erica cinerea (top) and heather Calluna vulgaris (below).

Bell heather

`heather

The three species growing together.

Three Ericaceae

Autumn squill Scilla autumnalis

Autumn squill

Autumn squill

Autumn squill Scilla autumnalis

Other interesting plants included Babington's leek

Babington's leek

Black bog rush

Black bog rush

Carline thistle

Carline thistle

Chamomile

Chamomile

Chamomile

Chamomile

Golden samphire

Golden samphire

Goldenrod, dwarfed in these exposed conditions

Goldenrod

Great burnet

Great burnet

Restharrow

Restharrow

Rock samphire, with serpentine and Kynance Cove in the background

Rock samphire

Rock samphire

Sea aster

Sea aster

Sneezewort with a tachinid fly , probably Eriothrix rufomaculata

Sneezewort

Yellow loosestrife

Yellow loosestife

Butterflies included small pearl-bordered and green-veined fritillary, marbled white and grayling (below)

Grayling

Grayling

A pair of ravens descended on dropped pieces of pasty, and fulmars coasted around the cliffs.

Raven

Raven

Raven

Fulmar

7th. More than 5 sightings of ocean sunfish from St Ives Island. Two Balearic shearwater too.

Ocean sunfish

2nd. Clifton Downs. Keeled garlic now in full flower. Holly blue and a tatty marbled white still on the wing.

Keeled garlic

1st. Woodchester Mansion, working on the greater horseshoe bats. Nettle-leaved bellflower and woolly thistle in the valley.

Greater horseshoe bat

Greater horseshoe bat

Nettle-leaved bellflower

Nettle-leaved bellflower

Wooly thistle

January 2021February 2021March 2021April 2021June 2021July 2021