Friday, 24 June 2016

Seeking solace in nature

After today's terrible news on the EU referendum here in the UK - terrible in that most of our powerful environmental legislation and funding for environmental initiatives comes from the EU - I'm seeking solace in recounting my jaunts in the great outdoors this week.

As you may recall, I have the week off, and despite grouting and resealing the bath taking up some of the time, I have managed to get outdoors! I started with a tour of Martin Down for a friend I'd met whilst in turkey last year - thankfully, the sun came out, as did the butterflies. Painted lady, marbled white, 5 spot burnet moth, small blue, common blue, small heath, common skipper, large white, brimstone, small tortoiseshell and possibly a dark-green fritillary. In one spot we even encountered 4 types of orchid - bee, fragrant, pyramidal and common spotted. And after telling my friend of the birds likely to be heard, they all obliged - corn bunting, turtle dove, yellowhammer, chifchaf and lots and lots of skylark. And this is all in the 'June gap' where the knapweed is yet to come out, and the chalkhill blues, dark green frits and marbled whites aren't yet out in force.

I also had the briefest of forays out to Langley Wood NNR - not especially great on the flower-front (only the odd spearwort and foxglove) BUT the ferns and lush woodland grasses and sedges were beautiful in their own right, in among the great diversity of trees including small-leaved lime - a rare speciality.

And today I'm off out to Clarendon Park, to wash away the cares of the world by a bit of llama-bonding in the ruins of the ancient hunting lodge. Anything to take away images of triumphant Farage and Boris (ugh).

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