I either read or was told some years ago that oak trees are the single plant that supports more other species than any other. A bit of googling leads me to “up to 284 species of insect” and 324 varieties of lichens on any one tree. The number of insects feeds a population of birds. Jays, pigeons, pheasants, ducks, squirrels, mice, badgers, deer and pigs feast on acorns in the autumn. Something I didn’t know: Acorns are not produced until the tree is at least 40 years old. (from here)link“.
Cats and flying insects have a common ability: they have access to “warp drive”.
Many a time I have left my bedroom, with a cat sound asleep on the covers, to arrive in the kitchen to find the cat already waiting at his food dish without detectably passing me en route. Similarly a butterfly or dragonfly can jump from where you were watching it closely to appear seemingly instantly several yards away in the length of time it takes to raise a camera to the eye and focus.
September was Haligmonað – holy month or Hærfestmonað – harvest festival month to the “Old English”. I’m not sure when these “Old English” folk flourished – rootling round the web gives me 450CE to 1100CE
Ð(cap) or ð(lower) [eth] is pronounced like “th” in “the”; apparently it’s a “voiced fricative”.
On with the pics:
Mouse over to see (some) captions.
Monday eighth September ’14
Tuesday 9 Sep
As I rounded the bend coming up to Boundary Lock (not Doefield Dun Lock as I captioned on Flickr) I was quite surprised to see a grey heron staring into the water. It remained there, only moving a foot or two when I tried to approach for a better shot, flying off eventually when a guy with a dog came up the nearby footpath. There’s a couple more pics below and all 50plus in a “slideshow”.
A Common Hawker dragonfly; a rarity on the canal – a ‘tupperware’ boat “Summer Breeze”; robins are becoming territorial; red fly on blue flower; grey/white moth – not ID’d; and (probably) a female Common Darter having a quick bask.
Someone recently said to me that Crane Flies have no redeeming feature – can’t argue with that – really ugly things; On the old pit spoil heap there’s signs that a squirrel’s been around – hazel nut detritus (I actually glimpsed the culprit but he was too quick for me to snap); I don’t know my wasps from my hoverflies, but if the term “wasp waisted” is anything to go by then this is a wasp; really annoying: can’t recall the name of these rather beautiful yellow flowers; the red ones are scarlet pimpernels, made famous by Baroness Orczy.
Two more of that heron; Just liked the pattern left by the harrow on what was until a short while ago a field of oilseed rape; can’t recall whether this common darter was landing or leaving; as leaves fall, hedgerow birds are becoming more visible.
Here’s a slideshow of all the pics I took of the heron:
A rather ginormous shaggy ink cap – it was about 20cm tall; The bird’s a jay with an acorn in its beak; Crab apples seem to be doing well this year; a glimpse of a kingfisher – all that’s visible is a streak of blue and its reflection..
Sometime between seeing the heron and Turnerwood yesterday, I dropped my “MyFi” – a device that acts as a wifi ‘hotspot’ to connect tablet with 3G service. So I retraced my steps to see if I could find it. No luck so had to mess about canceling & getting new etc.
Also trying weird background for the pic – horrid, innit?
The two remaining great crested grebe chicks seemed to by competing in a synchronised swim; cuteness incarnate, a long tailed tit.
Commas seem to outlast other butterflies, except speckled woods, that is.
Thorns and a dragonfly; a common blue; the skyline of the road to Brancliffe Farm always attracts me – don’t often see folk walking it; a few colourful butterflies are still around.
Spiders; buttercup; rose bay willow seeds; tiger moth; daddy long legs.
Goldfinches flock; ivy flowers, keep nets fill and copper choppers hover.
Sunday 14th September
Insects: dragonfly; bee and butterfly. Arachnids: spiders.