Friday, August 31, 2007
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
Rosie (third horse from the front, and Spot's equine third cousin) and friends (from lower Tokenbury) passing by the Cheesewring. The whole area is covered in the ruins of mine workings and evidence of very ancient inhabitation.
Sunday, August 26, 2007
Friday, August 24, 2007
I am not sure which of the large fritillaries this is. You need to get a good view of the underside of the wings to be sure and it was extremely uncooperative about this important issue, but it is either a dark green fritillary, or a high brown fritillary, or a niobe fritillary (only to be found in damp meadows in mainland europe!). It was fast moving and quite light coloured so it is probably a tattered high brown, and the forewing is gently concave. (there are lots of good butterfly links)
the small but intricate flowers of red bartsia, growing in meadows near you. Once considered a cure for toothache, hence its latin name odontites (as in orth-odontics ...straight teeth). It is semi parasitical and closely related to lousewort and yellow rattle (qv)
It is always exciting to stumble across something completely new. This is gipsywort. It is supposed to be common although I have never noticed it before. Superficially it looks like white deadnettle. It is the source of a black dye that, in the past, itinerant fortune tellers were supposed to use to give themselves a more swarthy appearance that would lend credibility to their gipsy/ancient Egyptian origins.
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
Wednesday, August 15, 2007
these fingerposts are scattered through the parish. I am sure they exist elsewhere but they are very characteristic of this area. Beals Mill to the right, Bray shop and Stoke straight ahead; I can't make out the name at the bottom.
Returning to it later (22/8), I can see it says Calstock, which is surprising because it is by no means the closest village in that direction.
the white flower is lesser stitchwort. It has very slender stems that are trailing through the more robust stems of knapweed. If you enlarge the photo you can see the characteristic cinnamon coloured pollen on the flower second from the top.
Monday, August 13, 2007
I am not sure what this is, I think it is a female yellowhammer, but could it be a female cirl bunting? I suspect not on the general principle that common things are common. Yellowhammers feed on the ground but like to sing from the top of trees. Notice swarm of horseflies about to descend on to photographer.
Wednesday, August 08, 2007
Monday, August 06, 2007
Sunday, August 05, 2007
this is the silver washed fritillary, found in old woods especially in the south. It is distinguished from other fritillaries by the silver streaks or wash on the underside of the wings (rather than spots). It is a powerful and agile flier. It looks very similar to high brown fritillary, which likes sunny glades.
Friday, August 03, 2007
growing in abundance on the walls in Launceston although I haven't seen it anywhere else locally. Not a native plant but naturalised on walls. A close relative of the fumitories, poppies and cabbages. Corydalis seemingly refers to the crested lark.