Saturday, February 23, 2013

Really slowing down...

Quick blast through the square before I got too cold (must get some fingerless gloves) but at least the promised rain never appeared. Was caught in the most pathetic snowstorm I've ever witnessed though, the odd ephemeral flake being gusted left, right or even upwards!

A big patch of Winter Heliotrope showed quite a lot of leaf-spotting. Close investigation revealed some active-looking Heliotrope Leaf-spot Ramularia purpurascens. Freshly emerging Hogweed and Garlic Mustard leaves were also new for this Challenge.

After last week's flatbugs (which I thought were monotypic) I later discovered there are two lookalike species in Britain. Today I went back in search of the females (very different naughty bits). Thanks to Mark Telfer's key I confidently changed my initial identification from Aneurus laevis to the correct identification of Aneurus avenius, sorry 'bout the mix up chaps!

More bark peeling revealed the New Zealand Weevil Euophryum confine and an empty case of Proutia betulina (empty hence not added to the tally) was found on a wooden signpost.

But that was all I could ID. There's stuff in pots which are all 'new' but they'll have to wait until I can give them some time. So I'm on a rather annoying total of 299 species. I may have to wander out for an owl before midnight, lol.

Additions for today are:

296 - Winter Heliotrope Leaf Spot Ramularia purpurascens - on hostplant by allotments
297 - Euophryum confine - in damp deadwood, Epsom Common
298 - Garlic Mustard - fresh leaves coming through, Epsom Common
299 - Hogweed - fresh leaves coming through, Epsom Common

* note - Aneurus laevis re-identified as the very similar Aneurus avenius (Cheers Mark!)

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