WFV, Anglers Country Park, 18th July 2017

Common CentauryCommon Centaury

Today’s trip took us to Anglers Country Park near Wakefield for the first time since we visited for a fungi foray there and in nearby Haw Park Wood in 2011.  The weather forecast was for a fine sunny day - for once the forecast was correct and our small party of eight enjoyed lovely weather throughout the day.

Our blogging leader had planned to walk round the lake and then pay a visit to Haw Park Wood after lunch.  He had forgotten that at Bees pace two miles can take four hours – Haw Park will have to wait for another day!

In the first few minutes we came across one of the highlights of the day – Broad-leaved Helleborine, and Joan continued to record a total of 103 plants in flower or fruit which included Common Centaury, Ploughman’s Spikenard, Bristly Ox-tongue, Water-pepper and Common Water-plantain.

On the wing throughout the day were scores and scores of Damsels – all Azures Common Blues - and four species of Dragonfly – Emperor, Ruddy Darter, Black-tailed Skimmer and Brown Hawker.  We kept on adding new species of butterfly to our list which had an impressive eleven species by the end of our day with Meadow Brown being by far the most prolific.

The time and heat of the day were not the best conditions for bird spotting but we did record a total of 23 including a number of singing Reed Warblers around the edge of the lake and Reed Buntings feeding a nest in the same area. A handsome young Black-headed Gull had us guessing as to its identity for a while and a family of Mute Swans, including four cygnets, sailed gracefully around the lake.

The cafe in the visitors’ centre was a welcome relief from the heat of the day and was patronised by the majority of our members who all agreed that it had been a very worthwhile and enjoyable outing.

Thanks to Robert for driving today.

 

Stuart

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