Wild, windy, sunshine and showers - these words sum up the "summer" weather conditions for this morning. There was some initial confusion as road signs stated that the road was closed at both ends of York Gate. However Julia, Sue N and myself were able to meet up at York Gate Quarry car park. "Where was Donald?!" We met up later. He had mistakenly made his way to the Surprise View car park.
Our band of three soon to be four started our exploration in the meadow to the left of the entrance. There was certainly an abundance of flora, grasses and sedges present. Surprisingly there was no evidence of Southern Marsh Orchid which were seen in good numbers on a visit in June also Common Spotted orchid did not have a presence. However Knapweed was in flower together with Meadowsweet, (Julia took a special interest in the spiral shaped fruits viewed through a lens), Lesser Stitchwort, Meadow Vetchling, Tufted Vetch, Self Heal, Birdsfoot Trefoil, Eyebright and Perforate St John's Wort. Insect life included several Meadow Brown butterflies and also Carder bees.Conditions were cloudy and temperatures decidedly cool hence the insect tlife was not as active as I had hoped for.
We the band of three continued on the woodland path where we met Donald who joined us to visit the pond which was decidedly overgrown with Flag Iris, Bullrushes, Spearwort, Water forgetmenot and Starwort. Tadpoles and a leach were seen in the rather muddy water. In the nearby grassland we saw several Small Skipper butterflies. We returned by walking through another meadow of tall grasses ( just too cold and windy for butterflies). This short outing was enjoyed in spite of the erratic weather conditions. Margaret
Sorry just one photo see photos of previous June visit.