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Archive for July, 2014

It is not often that I look at a group of caps and know I haven’t seen it before, but I did with this. It is the first Leucocoprinus growth I’ve seen in Abney. It is by the chapel on a wood chip pile, a dense cluster of distinctive caps, and as they are often / usually found on woodchips that is no great surprise. They won’t last for long.

Leucocoprinus cepistipes 29.7.14

My notes are here.

The photos for the fungi and slimemolds for this year are here.

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This sounds a bit odd, but I have long had an interest in hoverflies. I like an insect that looks back as me and decides what it thinks of me, wondering if I am a threat or if it needs to escape,  and weighing me up in some indefinable insect way. Hoverflies do this. They stay stationary in the air in front of anyone and they check them out, looking them over. Abney has a range of hoverflies, some more retiring than others, and at the moment there is an outbreak of marmalade flies, especially near the front and along the main ride from the front to the chapel. They are easy to identify for anyone who doesn’t know the group. They have 2 bands of black on each abdominal segment, often with a lighter band between them.  This is the only hoverfly with this pattern. They sup from all sorts of flowers. Here’s a few.

marmalade hoverfly on Hypericum flower 9.7.2014

marmalade hoverfly on honeysuckle, 9.7.2014

marmalade hoverfly on rose, 9.7.2014

marmalade hoverfly on field bindweed, 9.7.2014

marmalade hoverfly on hogweed. 9.7.2014

The hoverflies found this year are here among the insects etc.

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I’ve spent a lot of time trying to get a photo of the chicks and failed. They are half hidden by the ivy covered branches around the nest, and getting a good clear shot without the right photographic equipment is difficult. So it was a great delight to find Yael with this photo on her phone.

Sparrowhawk chick a few days ago.

The chicks are a bit more advanced now. Their feathers are not all white and they are trying wing stretches in the nest.

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