Wednesday 19 April 2023

Kentish Nature Walks - #71 - Great Crabbles Wood - 19th April 2023

A day spent catching up with pc, packing and housework prior to escaping to Lesvos tomorrow saw me in need of some air and so with the sun shining and blue sky at about 3pm I ventured out to Crabbles Bottom Orchard and Great Crabbles Wood for a short walk.

I just wanted a spring flower fix with one species in mind – my first Early Purple Orchids of the year and although many were still in bud one or two were standing proud.  As usual with this site some have plain and others spotted leaves.

Early Purple Orchid

Bluebells were starting to open up and the Chestnut coppice floor was carpet of fresh green leaves dotted with patches of blue along with sulphur Lesser Celandines and snowy pink Wood Anemones.

Wood Anemones

Lesser Celandines


Wild Strawberry

Clumps of Lords and Ladies leaves towered over the other flora and like the Orchids, some with and without spots.  A small clump of Cowslips contained one plant with curiously orangey petals.


Cowslips - a delightful varient

It was not particularly warm in the chill easterly wind but in sheltered spots I found a few insects including Episyrphus balteatus (my first for ages), Syprhus ribesii, Eupeodes corollae and Platycheirus albimanus and a nine Bombylius major keeping low and visiting the Celandines while what think were Nomada zonata (tiny!) and Nomada goodeniana. A couple of hardy Peacocks cruised around but no other species – it was cold!

Nomada zonata - not sure - am making enquiries

Nomada goodeniana

Twenty minutes later and I was back at the car replete with a mini wildlife lift.

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