Yesterday and today, I visited two different Wildlife Trust reserves. The first was a new one to me, Strawberry Banks and the second, I visited last year.
So I was mainly looking for orchids yesterday and I found some! Lots of them. And one I’d never seen before – the (Greater?) Butterfly Orchid.
Today I went with a couple of work colleagues to Daneway Banks. We went looking for the famous and very rare Large Blue butterflies, who should be merging from the ants nests by now (Yes! Ants nests!), but the up and down weather seems to have delayed things. We’ll be back 🙂
We did spot more Orchids, a few Common Blue butterflies and lots of day flying moths, a very interesting looking fungus plus a passing Lepidopterist! There’s always something to see at a Wildlife Trust reserve 🙂
P.S. The header image is of a log that has one of my favourite fungi growing in it – Green Elf Cup (Chlorociboria aeruginascens). It isn’t fruiting at the moment, but you can see the bluey/green staining of the mycelium. This type of stained wood is used still in ‘Tumbridgeware’ and parquetry.
I recently became obsessed with fungi (as anyone who follows my instagram will know!) and this article on the BBC Earth site helps explain why I am becoming more passionate about mushrooms the more I find out about them:
It’s an information superhighway that speeds up interactions between a large, diverse population of individuals. It allows individuals who may be widely separated to communicate and help each other out. But it also allows them to commit new forms of crime.
No, we’re not talking about the internet, we’re talking about fungi. While mushrooms might be the most familiar part of a fungus, most of their bodies are made up of a mass of thin threads, known as a mycelium. We now know that these threads act as a kind of underground internet, linking the roots of different plants. That tree in your garden is probably hooked up to a bush several metres away, thanks to mycelia.