A good turn out to this late addition to the programme, with a total of fourteen attending. The theme of the evening was insects, and so, armed with beating paraphernalia, we headed into the wood.
The first find of note was a long-horned beetle (Strangalia maculata). Further along the path, we started spotting Common Spotted orchids.
Moving off the path into an open, marshy area, the eagle-eyed amongst us noted some tiny orange/red dots amongst the mosses. On closer inspection, these turned out to be Eyelash fungus (Scutellinia scutellata) – cue grin on Martin’s face as this is listed as ‘scarce’.
Moving on down the path, we stopped to listen to distant calls of juvenile Tawny Owls (Strix aluco) and found an instar Speckled Bush Cricket (Leptophyes punctatissima). At the ‘hardstanding’ rolling back a log next to the pond revealed a female Great Crested Newt (Triturus cristatus), a very confiding Small Skipper (Thymelicus sylvestris) and an instar Oak Bush Cricket (Meconema thallisinum) as well a a number of Mirid Bugs.
As it was getting dark, we headed back to the car park, where a lucky few saw a Barn Owl (Tyto alba) quartering the opposite field. Following a cookie-break, we walked the first section of the path to spot female glow worms (Lampyris noctiluca) and found seven of these bright green gems in all.
Click on any of the pictures for a larger image.