Wild @ Rivers - June 2018

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Diary Entry by Charmaine Cooper


Small hard green fruits are developing on the pear trees while on the plum trees the immature plums are hanging like bunches of grapes. The fruit on the apple trees is catching up quickly with the plums and pears. The tall grasses beneath the trees sway gently in the breeze. The heat of the day has brought out the Butterflies. Two Speckled Wood Butterflies spiral upwards, climbing higher and higher, neither willing to give up its territory. A Chaffinch sings its own territorial rights to the orchard.

Burnet Moth

In the meadow, hidden from view amongst the grass and buttercups, a Pheasant is calling. The Ox-eye Daisies display showy white star flowers that follow the sun. The yellow flower of the Yellow Rattle plants are now withering and developing seed pods that once dry will rattle. Along the meadow’s footpaths the Rabbits nibble on the short grass accompanied by Blackbirds and Magpies.

Ringlet Butterfly

As the month progresses the heat has intensified and the Birds have withdrawn deep into the orchard scrub to shelter from the relentless sun, but the Butterflies and insects are enjoying the hot days. Ringlet Butterflies are busily flitting through the grass before dashing off to the hedgerow to seek nectar from the flowers on the Blackberry bush. The meadow is alive with insects that buzz and click. Burnet Moths are now on the wing and can be seen during the daylight hours resting on grass or Knapweed. Meadow Brown Butterflies are around but not in large numbers but there are several Ringlet Butterflies with their chocolate brown wings and gold rings.

Soldier Beetles

Within the orchard’s scrub, resting on the leaf of the Common Nettle, a Ladybird’s glossy red wing cases shine vividly in the dappled sunshine that filters through the Hawthorn leaves. On white flowers blooming along the footpath a couple of Common Red Soldier Beetles are busily mating. Many Marbled White Butterflies are now on the wing; their distinctive black and white pattern clearly identifies them as they dart across the meadow. The meadow has changed; the Buttercups are fading along with the Daisies and the long awaited Pyramidal Orchids are blooming, their purple cone shaped flower heads spiking above the meadow’s grass. Vetches and Knapweed are flowering and the occasional Skipper Butterfly briefly visits before dashing on its way.

Pyrimidal Orchid

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