Nature Notes from Argyll
(and occasionally other places)

Sat 18 Aug 2012 Dalavich - a SNHG field trip.  Conditions dull.

Phratora vitellinae or P laticollis

Beetles found eating away at the surface of Poplar leaves, at the start of the walk.  I think they're Phratora vitellinae but can't rule out P laticollis.

Pentatoma rufipes

First sighting so far of our Species of the Month, the Forest Bug - though other rarer bugs have been sighted.


  Entomophthora muscae agg.

The hoverfly Melanostoma scalare attacked by an insect-eating fungus which forces it to climb to the top of a stem just before it dies, and cling there, so that the fungus spores will be exposed to the wind. You can see the fungus along the sides of its body.

Tipula paludosa

Tipula paludosa, a common cranefly of tall vegetation in damp places. You can tell this is a male by the bulbous, rather than tapered, end to the abdomen. The species can be id'd by the long narrow dark cell along the top of the wing with a long narrow pale cell immediately below it, the rest of the wing being uniform pale grey, together with the fact that each antenna has 14 segments.


Mitopus morio

The harvestman Mitopus morio on Angelica flowers


Chromatomyia aprilina leaf-mine

The larval mine of Chromatomyia aprilina in a Honeysuckle leaf.

Scopariinae, species unknown

Above: Moth found by Sallie on Alder trunk. Regrettably the experts say it can't be identified with certainty as it's too worn (perhaps a polite way of saying my photo is rubbish!)

Right: Similar moth that came to my window that evening, this one is Eudonia truncicolella.

  Eudonia truncicolella


Sun 19 Aug 2012 Inveraray - a Clyde and Argyll Fungus Group foray led by Dick Peebles

Marasmius rotula

The Collared Parachute or Horsehair Fungus, Marasmius rotula, a common but striking species found on twigs and woody debris.

  Ceratiomyxa fruticulosa

Ceratiomyxa fruticulosa, the only British member of the Ceratiomyxomycetes, a group related to the slime moulds.  I'd not seen it before but will know it if I see it again!

Boletus pulverulentus   Boletus pulverulentus

The Inkstain Bolete, Boletus pulverulentus, uncommon this far north, and easily recognised by the way its cut surface immediately turns blue all over.

Russula nigricans

The Blackening Brittlegill, Russula nigricans, in its fresh state before changing to its familiar black appearance.  At any age, the stem if cut will turn pale pink (it's just beginning to in the photo) then red, grey and finally black.

  Russula nobilis

Russula nobilis, the Beechwood Sickener


Mycena bulbosa

Mycena bulbosa on a dead rush stem

  Gymnosporangium cornutum

Gymnosporangium cornutum on the underside of a Rowan leaf

Coprinopsis acuminata

Coprinopsis acuminata, the Humpback Inkcap, beginning to deliquesce.

  Phaeolus schweinitzii

Dyer's Mazegill (Phaeolus schweinitzii), which rots the base of conifers

Pseudoboletus parasiticus

For me the most exciting find of the day was Pseudoboletus parasiticus found by Robert MacPherson.  It was the first time I'd seen this bolete which grows as a parasite on the Common Earthball.  It had only been recorded once before this far north.

  Phlogophora meticulosa caterpillar

No foray would be complete without some non-fungal finds.  This is the caterpillar of the Angle Shades moth.  Thanks to Roy Leverton for the ID.




All photos and other content copyright Carl Farmer