Posted by Graeme Lyons , Wednesday, 8 March 2017 10:09
I had ten minutes before a meeting yesterday to try and find some interesting wildlife at Woods Mill and I managed two species new to the reserve network! Well, nearly. First up is Alder Tongue, a fungus that grows out of Alder cones. I have looked for this in the past but yesterday I simply reached up and pulled the nearest cones down and it was on the first twig I looked at! Obviously, this is more impressive when the cones are green. I will have to go back. Barry has since confirmed he had it last year at Castle Water but he hasn't put the record in yet so, technically it was still a first for the reserve network!
Then this fly. Not quite new as I have seen it here before but somehow didn't manage to get the record in! This is Phytomyza hellebori, a fly that mines the leaves of hellebore, this being Stinking Hellebore. It's just around the back of the workshop at Woods Mill. It just goes to show, even when you don't have much time you can still find significant records. The reserve network species list is now on at least 9804 species. Only 196 to the 10,000 mark!