Nature Notes from Argyll
(and occasionally other places)

Wed 28 Jan 2009 Benderloch to North Connel

Kindbergia praelonga   Pohlia nutans

Some mosses growing in the beach sand at the edge of the vegetated zone.  Kindbergia praelonga and Pohlia nutans.

Brachythecium albicans   Cladonia humilis

Brachythecium albicans formed large patches in the same habitat.  The lichen Cladonia humilis also occurs at this margin between bare sand and turf.

Bryum capillare   Ptychomitrium polyphyllum

Common mosses on shore rocks are Bryum capillare and Ptychomitrium polyphyllum.

Tortula muralis   Physconia distorta

Tortula muralis on a seaside wall-top, and Physconia distorta on a seaside tree.

Walking along the narrow sandy path between North Connel Airfield and the beach, I met a Sparrowhawk flying along the path about 1-2 ft above the ground, coming straight towards me.  It only swerved off the path at the last moment so I got a wonderful view of its markings in the sunlight.  It elegantly leapt the fence, then descended to its former altitude and continued in a straight line over the short grass till it was out of sight.

Fri 30 Jan 2009

A SNHG midweek recording walk.  We explored the mainland side of the Seil Sound, south of the Clachan Bridge.

Ramalina siliquosa, grazed by molluscs   Dermatocarpon miniatum

Large areas of Sea Ivory, Ramalina siliquosa, on coastal rocks has been grazed to the base by slugs, giving a stubble effect.  You can see the ungrazed ones at the top of the rock.

The dotty brown lichen Dermatocarpon miniatum was a good find by Alan.

Agrobacterium tumefaciens gall on Sorbus aucuparia   Ramalina fraxinea

A Crown Gall on Rowan caused by Agrobacterium tumefaciens, and the lichen Ramalina fraxinea on Hazel.

Auricularia auricula-judae   Aegopinella nitidula

Rosy found both these: Jew's Ear on Elder, which I hadn't seen before in Argyll, and the snail Aegopinella nitidula in leaf litter.  In the pic it's not in situ but on some fresh wet lettuce to entice it out of its shell.

Sat 7 Feb 2009 Ganavan

Parmotrema crinitum   Degelia atlantica

A couple of quick lichens from a Willow beside a burn: Parmotrema crinitum (aka "Desperate Dan") and Degelia atlantica.

Mon 23 Feb 2009

Fox/badger spoil heap

I've been doing a badger survey for Scottish Badgers.  This involved visiting a number of places and looking for signs of badger activity.  I only found signs in one spot: the den shown above which is probably an active fox den used intermittently by badgers, but does thereby count as a badger sett for conservation purposes.

Meles meles footprint   Vulpes vulpes footprint

The LH pic shows a badger footprint from the spoil heap in the previous photo.  The four paw prints are pointing to the left with the central pad behind them, clearest in the upper right.  The RH pic shows a fox print from the same spoil heap.


All photos and other content copyright Carl Farmer