Saturday, January 26, 2013

TM2499, Sat 26th Jan

Gave the square another bash this afternoon, as the snow started to melt and the sun came out again at last. Quite a lot of new things, but hard work and not all identified yet certainly. The first wasn't too difficult though, a surprisingly late Lesser Black-backed Gull (although numbers do usually dip around mid-winter here).

The other additions today that I'm fairly happy with were White-tipped Bristle-moss Orthotrichum diaphanum, the case-bearing moth Psyche casta, a groggy-looking Seven-spot Ladybird, Snowdrop at last just inside the square boundary, Smoky Bracket Bjerkandera adusta, Crescent-cup Liverwort Lunularia cruciata, Garden Snail and I confirmed last week's fungus Exidia plana. This puts me on at least 155.

Additionally, I have an odd gall-like thing on hawthorn, a couple of fungi on willow, perhaps Elder Whitewash, perhaps Hazel Woodwart and another moss. Moreover, whilst looking under the microscope at some cases of Luffia ferchautella that I'd picked up, I discovered some unidentified mites, and whilst looking at the Exidia plana I found some springtails lurking in its folded structure. There's just so much life out there!

I was also playing with my new macro clip-on thingy (i.e. this) as recommended by Mr Lawlor and already have results I'm quite pleased with. Quite hard to use though so is going to take a bit of practice. But if I can photograph mites on micro-moth cases, it can't be bad!

Unidentified gall on hawthorn twig in the garden. Any thoughts?

White blobby dots on willow stump by the pond (a bit furry looking under the microscope)

The case of Psyche casta on a fencepost. Quite pleased with this shot, but does show the tiny depth of field. BTW, it could perhaps also be Psyche crassiorella it appears, but this is so far unrecorded in Norfolk. I really ought to look a bit more carefully though...

Gratuitous Snowdrop in snow photo - might be last chance...

The undersides of what I'm calling Smoky Bracket Bjerkandera adusta (left)and Turkeytail Trametes versicolor (right), growing side by side on a stump (probably alder) on the common.

White-tipped Bristle-moss Orthotrichum diaphanum on a willow trunk amongst lichens (I reckon?)

Another showing the depth of field! The case of Luffia ferchautella.

Stupidly tiny - a mite on a case of Luffia ferchautella. I do not expect to put a name to this any time soon...


  1. Typically they are quite smooth and taper to a nice conical point (like a wizard's hat I always say, but not as rigid as a traffic cone) with just the occasional larger fragment or two seen. Is that the pupal excuviae hanging out the end of the case? Could maybe double check it for signs of wings?(ferchaultella is always apterous). Its difficult to tell from the pics, but it somehow doesn't 'feel' quite right to me.

  2. Also - what the heck substrate is the upper 'ferchaultella' on? Seems more the sort of thing lichenella would favour...

  3. Oops, somewhere I lost the opening half of my first comment!!! In a nutshell, I was wondering how confident you were that the bottom pic shows Luffia ferchaultella and that I thought it showed way too much fragment adornment for that species. Cheers!

  4. Thanks Seth, happy to be corrected if this is wrong. There are shed-loads of these along the walls in the village. Mark Lawlor pointed them out initially on a visit - so it's his fault if they're wrong! Seriously though, I named them on the basis of the key in MBGBI2, p130 - case covered with sand/lichen, cross-section round (but perhaps I haven't checked this critically enough?), case tapered. And then I'd backed this up by looking at the species recorded on . But perhaps I need to check more critically?

  5. So just pot a load of them later this year and see if anything with wings emerges?!?! :D

  6. Top plan sir, I shall indeed.

    Update on the white blobby things - they MAY be Lachnella alboviolascens but I'm going to send a sample to Tony Leech, our top fungus man in Norfolk.