Friday, 3 July 2015

Stone the crows, it's Kentle Wood again!

The sun was doing it's bit and I felt compelled to take advantage of the conditions and visit Kentle Wood. It is about a 20-25 minutes walk so it provided a bit of exercise too.

Pyramidal Orchid was still in flower in Browns Road,
Daventry. 3 July, 201

With a couple of hundred yards still to walk I paused to see if the Pyramidal Orchid (see blog for 25 June) was still there. Yep! Safe and sound. I assume people have noticed it as they've strolled past but have left it in peace.

Marsh Mallow beside the track near Kentle
Wood, Daventry. 3 July, 2015

A few yards short of the reserve entrance a plant of Musk Mallow, Malva moschata, was in flower. Would it be very wrong of me to scatter a few seeds in Kentle Wood? Probably not, as the woodland is all planted anyway.

Rose-bay Willow Herb adjacent to Kentle
Wood, Daventry. 3 July, 2015

Within Kentle Wood Rose-bay Willow Herb (Chamaenerium angustifolium) is present although the plant photographed is, like the Musk Mallow, just outside the perimeter of the wood. There seems to be some dispute about the spelling, with some floras (and Wikipedia) insisting on 'Chamerion', but I'll stick to my guns. Of course, some authorities call it Epilobium angustifolium, but that opens up a whole new can of worms.

Large Skipper in Kentle Wood, Daventry
3 July, 2015

Once in the woodland I found there were lots of butterflies about: Ringlets, Meadow Browns, an odd Brimstone and Skippers. The species pictured is a Large Skipper. Ochlodes sylvanus, one of many specimens flitting along the rides.

Ringlet butterfly. Kentle Wood, Daventry.
3 July, 2015

Although I included a picture of a Ringlet in my recent Pitsford Water blog, I couldn't, resist another, here resting on a cherry leaf.

Apples, though small, provide interesting variety in
Kentle Wood, Daventry. 3 July, 2015

Fruit trees were commonplace too. Cherries were ripening and would soon be attracting wasps, bullfinches and so on, but there were also apples, some obviously planted but others of doubtful provenance.

A huge number of hazels have been planted in
Kentle Wood, Daventry. 3 July, 2015

But hazel nuts were also ripening, potential food for nuthatches and woodpeckers but equally important for mice and voles (there is no evidence that dormice live in Kentle Wood - yet).

The galls of a mite, Aceria laevis, are present on this
willow leaf.  Kentle Wood, Daventry 3 July, 2015

Willows support an enormous number of gall-causing invertebrates. Many of these are insects but the galls shown are caused by the activities of a mite, Aceria laevis. It is widespread and common but I was pleased to find it.

I'll be keeping an eye on these willows over the next few weeks. They could provide a few surprises.

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