Productive and Fun!

Thursday, June 22nd 2017

The temperature was a lot cooler today as we started work with the volunteers at 8.30 this morning. We had some important guests attending the Field Centre so we finished a few tidying up jobs before retreating to the workshop to get on with the days job list.
Christine and John were re-vamping the finger posts: carefully staining the written signs with excellent results.

Peter, and the two Jackies’, were bracken bashing on the Wetland Bank. This involves cutting and removing the bracken to prevent the grasses and other flora from being suppressed.

The Milk Crate Hide, which looks onto the Wetland from the conifer plantation, had Brian putting on a new wooden plate on the actual milk crate.

Jonathan and Tony strimmed the path edges and net rides, cleaning up with the blower to remove the newly cut grass littering the paths.

 Meanwhile, the rest of the team were busy repairing path edges….

….and putting new gravel onto various paths.

Lunch felt like a family affair; plenty of laughter and banter.

We seem to see plenty of mini beasts today, this Alder Moth which is classified as ‘scarce and thinly distributed or restricted resident’ in North Yorkshire.

This Figwort Weevil, Cionus scrophulariae, which is a mere 5mm was found in the field centre. As its name suggests it grazes on the leaves of figwort, also mullien and buddleia.

When disturbed the adult drops from the plant and is well camouflaged as a crumb of soil, it appeared to crawl onto this bark then tucked its head into its body. The slug-shaped larvae are covered in very shiny, sticky 'glue', resembling a droplet of tar. This is very distasteful to both potential predators and parasites.

A new one for me was this Pill Millipede, which is easily mistaken for Pill Woodlouse which has only has one pair of legs per segment, millipedes have two pairs!

The Pill Millipede has one large terminal tergite, end segment, rather than the several seen in the Pill Woodlouse.

We have a fair few Speckled Woods, and Ringlet Butterflies flying around the reserve, this one landing on Jackie B’s arm.

 Thank you so much to the whole team today, productive and fun!

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