The shaggy bracket fungus on the ash tree at Fiveways, first reported by Clive Knight and identified for us by our Tree Officer Rich Murphy, has grown HUGE.Continue reading “Inonotus hispidus”
Sweet chestnuts (Castanea sativa) in the Arboretum, photographed yesterday from the park’s central path.Continue reading “Sweet chestnut”
Last month the Government announced controversial changes to England’s planning system, which will make it much easier for developers to build new homes and commercial buildings but much more difficult for local councils to deny planning permission in designated areas. The ostensible object of the changes is to speed up development but there is an undeniable political subtext….Continue reading
A red tailed bumblebee worker (Bombus lapidarius) collecting nectar and pollen from a meadow cranesbill flower.
Photographed in the park, Friday 11th September.
A woody nightshade flower, photographed this week, in the car park.Continue reading
Most of our willow warblers will have left by now; they will be on their way to sub-Saharan Africa where they will spend their winter. Theirs is the longest journey undertaken by any of the park’s migratory birds. Why do such tiny birds fly so far and take such risks to do it?Continue reading “Willow warbler migration”
A Walk In The Park
by Ian Bushell
I had a quick wander round the park this afternoon to see what needs doing, to assess the ragwort situation in the fields, and look at the tree damage done by the wind. There were three Roe Deer under the Owl Oak in the Church Lane field across the Lambrok, where they are planning to build houses..Continue reading
RPS has resubmitted Planning Application 18/10035/OUT to build houses on the fields between the park and Church Lane. The application was submitted on Wednesday, 2nd September, for a period of public consultation that will end on September 30th. The county’s policies for this site (H2.4) are on page 43 of Wiltshire’s Housing Site Allocation Plan.
There is a group of shaggy parasols, the fruiting bodies of Chlorophyllum rhacodes, just coming up under the first oak tree as you come through the park’s main gate.
Pictures by Suzanne Humphries
Here is a video, taken from BBC Earth’s Spy In The Wild series, about squirrels caching acorns.
The header picture was taken by DKG
Oak trees produce thousands of acorns every year. Somebody has worked out that an oak tree can produce ten million acorns over its lifetime. In a good year, they carpet the ground under the tree.Read on:
The park is full of ripening blackberries, all free from the contaminants of vehicle exhaust. Here is a recipe for blackberry and apple jam.Continue reading “Blackberry and apple jam”
During lockdown, we noticed more families walking in the park: excited children and their parents, and sometimes grandparents, all eager to get out of the house and take their permitted exercise in our springtime park. As lockdown has eased, the families have stayed; all summer, there have been socially distanced picnickers under the trees and home-schooled children racing wildly through the fields and woods, sometimes with our downloadable activity sheets in their hands.Continue reading “Feedback”
By Ian Bushell
A male Common Darter (Sympetrum striolatum) resting on the wooden footbridge over the Lambrok tributary. At the pond, there were six male Common Darters protecting their own patches and I was lucky enough to get a picture of this pair mating.
A mating pair of common darters photographed near the pond by Ian Bushell.
Header picture: common darter, by Ian Bushell.
Jay Pickard has sent us a picture of a kingfisher that he took from the Decorated Bridge yesterday.
by Ian Bushell
Transect for August
Numbers and variety are a bit disappointing; a cold late-summer day.
The old filled-in pond at the end of Lambrok Meadow is where I saw the Common Blue among the Ragwort, Willow-herb, Spindle, Thistle, Rose, Bramble, Red and White clover .
All summer long, swallows, house martins and swifts have hawked and hunted for winged insects over the park. The swifts have already begun their migration, the swallows will leave next and the house martins will go last of all.
Here is a short video to help you tell the three species apart.
Question from Tom Martin:
Found this on the pavement near my house. Do you know what it is?
There are forty one species of Cantharidae in Britain and almost all go by the common names of soldier or sailor beetle.Read on:
Newspapers, online and off, have been bombarding us with headlines like this one from the Guardian:
Littering epidemic in England
We would just like to say: Not in our park, there isn’t; our park is pristine. Our park goers pick up their litter (and often other people’s litter as well) and put it in the bins.
Pictures by DKG
Ragwort is extraordinarily successful; all the “injurious weeds” named in the 1959 Weed Act are.Continue reading “Ragwort”