Monday, December 24, 2012


{Posting from Seth}

My chosen square is TQ1960 (much of which is built up and heavily populated) but has the very distinct advantage of having most of the remainder fall on top of my beloved Epsom Common, SSSI and recently LNR.

I’m hoping that urban leaf mining and botanising sessions will turn up a few gems on the estates, failing that I plan (hope!) to be active early enough in the mornings to avoid the bulk of the local inbred kids, the packs of slobbering Staffies and the obligatory smart-arse boy racers.

Epsom Common itself has been my playground for well over twenty years, I know it well. The Great and Stew Ponds fall outside of TQ1960 as do the chalk-influenced eastern areas and the main heathy habitats.  Despite this, I reckon the mix of deciduous woodland, relict heath patches, various small ponds, an open meadow area and large amount of dead wood will give me a really good fighting chance of hitting 1000 species in 2013. At least it will if I ever manage to get my head round some more invert orders!

I actually live just outside the square in TQ2060 which means I have automatically forfeited any species attracted to a garden-based moth trap. But it also means I don’t have to try and scrape 1000 species out the generally duff habbo that is Epsom High Street, the associated car parks, office blocks,  the railway line and all manner of naturalist-unfriendly areas!

Best of luck to all, see you on the winning podium! ;)



  1. 29 Dec - almost there! Checking through my lists I reckon I should see 70 bird species in my square, 80 is feasible with a few lucky jams and an awful lot of effort. Mammal-wise I know both Harvest Mouse and Dormouse occur although both would be lifers for me. I'm hoping to befriend someone with a decent bat detector and tag along on a few small mammal trapping sessions. I hope to hit 20 mammal species during 2013.

  2. The only fishes I know of are the 3-spined Sticklebacks in Stamford Pond, reptiles include Common Lizard, Grass Snake and Adder. Slow Worm appears absent? Amphibians are Common Frog, Common Toad, Smooth Newt and Great-crested Newt. Seriously wanting New Year's Day to be full of good weather!!! :D

  3. Half-time break from wandering TQ1960. Thrown outta the pub (which is very handily situated within the square) at about 1:30am with coot, mute swan and a 4 plants already on the list. Went to bed around 3am. Woke up sometime later and bleerily wandered around Epsom Common. Back indoors by 1300, tally is in the 130s. Had some grub, had a shite, feeling better already. Second half beckons. Update to follow :)

  4. Back from another wander, tally is now up in the 160s with a few bits still to ID. House Sparrow, Canada Goose and Orange Ladybird seen, but not in the right square!!! Reckon I'll claw them back soon enough, lol. Orders seen so far are mammals, birds, amphibians, beetles, bugs, arachnids, molluscs, algae, lichen, mosses, liverworts, fungi, moths, woodlice and centipedes. I'm not counting galls unless I can ID the occupant (which may be different from the causer) or mines unless tenanted. No dead stuff either, but I'm happy to count birds on calls only. These are just my own rules for the challenge, I'll doubtless refine/add to them as time goes on. Anyway, the weather was lovely and good fun was had. So ends Day 1. I'm provisionally booked in for a few days in Dorset next weekend so it'll be a couple of weeks before I can get back into my square again. Guess I'll be playing catch-up pretty soon!!!