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Friday, May 20, 2011

Wed 18th May 2011 - Dickson's Copse, Dodnor.

This week the team were working down in the woods just off the cycle track at Dodnor. We were greeted with the sight of two huge piles ( a total of 8 tons) of chippings surrounded by numerous wheelbarrows...!
The path builders were soon hard at work working from the central point of the path back to the pile of materials. Other GG members were tasked to give the edges of the footpath a light trim - nothing too heavy in case of nesting birds etc. Although there was a very light shower, the weather remained good and we had a reasonable turn-out. If you have the time when you are in the area, take a walk up through this copse - it is well worth a visit (and now has a nice new pathway..!)

Carrie’s Nature Lesson.

A really nice find this week - the Common Spotted Orchid (Dactylorhiza Fuchsii) which, as its name suggests, is probably the commonest and most familiar of our wild orchids. An attractive plant ranging from 15 to 60 cm in height, with a spire of flowers varying in colour from white to pale purple with purple spots, two lipped flowers, and narrow usually dark spotted leaves, it is unmistakeably an orchid. It is a perennial of calcareous to neutral soils, found in a broad range of habitats including chalk grassland, meadows, scrub, woodland, marshes and fens, dune-slacks and even mildly acidic heaths. Although often found in relatively unmanaged habitats it seems to do particularly well following disturbance, which explains why it can sometimes be found in high numbers on artificial habitats such as waste ground, quarries and railway embankments. It flowers from June to August (so this week’s find is earlier than usual), and some highly perfumed colonies are attractive to day-flying moths.

Many thanks to Carrie for the Pics and nature lesson.

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