3 Jul 2022

Local Orchids

In the past few years I've located several species of Orchid around where we live - Bee Orchid, Common Spotted Orchid and Broad-leaved Heliborine. I'd heard there were good numbers of Southern Marsh Orchid on the old abandoned golf course but had never made the effort to go and see them as its outside my usual walking area. 

Earlier this month I checked my local sites and found good numbers of Common Spotted Orchids and a single Broad-leaved Heliborine in its usual spot.

Interestingly I found a single Bee Orchid nearby. There used to be a colony of around 20 plants in this location but I hadn't seen any for around 3 years since the farmer sprayed the track with weed killer.

A photo sent by a friend and fellow orchid enthusiast of a Pyrimdal Orchid on a grass verge in the village had me scurrying to see it as Id never seen one locally before. Apparently this plant has been emerging every year for the past three years and I pondered as to where it had come from.

I soon found  out as  I decided whilst I was out of my comfort zone I'd explore the abandoned golf course and found a colony of 10 probably only about 200 metres from where the first one is located.

There were plenty of Southern Marsh Orchids around but most were past their flowering best. I also located a few of the Bee Orchids Simon had told me about but they to were a bit bedraggled and parched.

That makes 5 species of orchid now within walking distance of the house. I'll certainly visit the old golf course again. The abandoned ponds were teaming with dragonflies and the overgrown fairways and greens hosted many butterflies - Ringlet, Meadow Brown, Red Admiral, Small Tortoiseshell, Common Blue and Small Skipper were all seen.

Scrub is invading a lot of the areas and I also had singing Reed Bunting, Bullfinch and best of all a reeling Grasshopper Warbler.

There were a lot of hirundines (including about 200 Swifts) hawking for insects over the course and, with the presence of so many dragonflies, I'm pretty sure if  ispend more time there I'll pick up a Hobby.

No comments :