Thursday, 9 August 2012

Sulham and Moor Copse

Sulham and Pangbourne Area

Walks in my local area just west of Reading. Autumn 2009
Snow 2009
Spring 2012
August 2012 Fungi 2012
Bluebells 2014
Summer 2014
Autumn 2014
Autumn 2015

Heat and sun have built up again after a somewhat damper spell. I decided on a gentle jaunt from home, just a few miles across the woods and fields to Pangbourne. The omens were good as the first thing I saw was a pair of young deer bounding into a field, quite close to houses. A few hundred yards along, near a very large Wild Service Tree I spotted something I had given up seeing this year, one of my favourite butterflies a Silver-washed Fritillary (Argynnis paphia).

Silver-washed Fritillary,Argynnis paphia

Walking down through the woods to Pincents Lane I was glad to see that wild honey bees were busy around their natural hive - a hole is an ash tree. They had been spotted here two years ago.

Bee nest

A nice bright flower to see in August is fleabane (Pulicaria dysenterica). In general the wetter and cooler weather this summer has made all the plants grow and flower well. In the woods I saw garlic mustard in flower again.

Fleabane

Along Pincents Lane there are a good many different wild flowers. For a change I managed to get this bumble bee in focus, feeding one a Scabious (Knautia arvensis) flower.

Scabious

The macro lens on the camera came in handy when taking these seeds on some kind of umbelifer. They look like they might be beetles rather than seeds.

Hogeweed

Then I spotted a new plant to me (although no doubt I have passed it many times as just 'toadflax') it is Pale toadflax (Linaria repens), a very attractive flower with that purple veining.

Pale toadflax,Linaria repens

Another marvel for the close up are the developing buds of Burdock (Arctium lappa) the mesh looks a bit like those pierced Chinese ivory balls. You can see the 'sticky' burs beginning to develop.

Burdock,Arctium lappa

Here is a view back across the ripe fields to the village of Sulham in the distance.

Sulham view

A repeat from my last posting, another Nettle-leaved Bell flower (Campanula trachelium).

Campanula trachelium,Nettle-leaved Bell flower

I then walked through the nature reserve at Moor Copse. Not a great deal to see from the path, except for this delightful small flower which I think is Corn mint (Mentha arvensis).

Mentha arvensis,Corn mint

Coming out of the woods and along the banks of the River Pang I came across a hogweed (Heracleum mantegazzianum) that was six foot tall and full of flowers and insects.

Giant hogweed,Heracleum mantegazzianum

The meadows along the Pang had some good specimens of ragwort.

Ragwort

Last but by no means least, was a small tortoiseshell (Aglais urticae) I saw just on the path across the meadows.

Small Tortoiseshell,Aglais urticae

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