This morning I was very fortunate to be invited into a private
brownfield site not too far from work for a poke around. There were a couple of objectives but we set
about recording as much of everything as we could in the short amount of time
There was some fervent botanising with some key plants such
as Oak-leaved Goosefoot and Dittander easily picked up on the old fly ash lagoons
along with two species of Melilot, three of Ragwort, Hemp Agrimony, Sea
Buckthorn, towering Great Mullein, vibrant Broad-leaved Pea and the more subtle
|Wild Parsnip - Pastinaca sativa |
But the prize were the Marsh Helleborines and we found a
small patch of Birch woodland that had several large conglomerations of this
delightful Orchid in shades of pink, white, lilac and burgundy. None were especially tall and many had had
their flowers spikes removed by Rabbits.
| Marsh Helleborines|
The Mosquitoes and Clegs were particularly voracious and we
soon escaped back out into the open.
There were a couple of Common Spotted Orchids in their too although one
was almost pure white and spotless.
|Common Spotted Orchid|
|Common Spotted Orchid|
There were several delightful tall grasses, sedges and rushes including a rich
purple haze one and I am sure that Enid will enlighten me further in due
|Wood Small-reed - Calamagrostis epigejos|
|Sea Rush - Juncus martimus|
|Saltmeadow Rush - Juncus gerardii|
|I am hoping that Bob V sees these huge wondrous lichen images...|
Blue-eyed Hawkers and Emperors were seen and Black-tailed
Skimmers and Darters dashed around the lagoon edges where Coots, Moorhens, Little
Grebes and Mallards were seen.
I picked up a fair Hoverfly selection with Volcella zonaria
and Tropidia scita the pick and the usual Butterfly and Bumblebees species were
noted. I suspect that there will be
Shrill Carder Bee here too but I was happy with several Megachile centuncularis
and pollen laden Dasypoda hirtipes both of which had a penchant for the soft
heads of Perennial Sow Thistle.
|Small 8Skipper on Goats Rue|
Moths were represented by Shaded Broad Bar, Silver-Y and
Garden Grass-veneer and a single Wasp Spider was found
along with many Labyrinth.
|Garden Grass-veneer (Chrysoteuchia culmella)|
|Shaded Broad Bar|
was the ultra rare Distinguished Jumping Spider that we also wanted to find but
my time ran out and I had to leave before the others managed to find this
Hopefully they will invite me back in for another look.
Back at RSPB Rainham Marshes the heat was building once again but the shade
under the building was actually cool today and I muddled through although once
again it was very quiet visitor wise.
Eight southbound Black-tailed Godwits, two Buzzards and
single Grey and Yellow Wagtails were my ornithological highlights but as usual
of late I managed some inverts with several Wasp Spiders in the car park verge
and the very smart but tiny Mangora acalypha who was in the process of spinning
|Wasp Spider with Meadow Grasshopper|
I was off to see Sam Shippey’s wife Diana after work with
the Memory Book that I made for the family so it was only fitting that this
roaring Spitfire hurtled over the Centre in the late afternoon...
|Just for you Sam...|
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