Notes from the field meeting that took place on 21st September. Keep an eye on forthcoming events on the events page.
The walk on Nottingham Hill took place during a period of late summer sunshine and warmth, though the wildlife was in autumnal mode, with few plants flowering and few birds in evidence. There was therefore the opportunity to look in a little more detail at some confusing species of plants and practise identification using fruits, seeds and vegetative characters.
Using the shape of partially withered seed heads, we looked at several common grasses to try to establish their unique character. We also identified some yellow Asteracaea, bindweeds and thistles to genus level. At an old wall covered with bryophytes, we looked at the remarkable rehydration abilities of Rambling Tail Moss, Anomodon viticulosus, and in Gotherington Wood at some epiphytic mosses and liverworts.
The walk ended at the permanent short grassland of the old quarries on Longwood Common, where we found the remains of the summer flowers of thiss limestone community.
The Nottingham Hill circuit, with its extensive views across the Severn Vale, makes a varied walk. There are stretches of ‘high Cotswold’ arable fields, two former coppice woods and some short permanent grassland overlying old quarry works.
It is hoped to use the site for a dawn chorus meeting next year.
Click here for a list of selective species in the order encountered.