Friday, 21 June 2013

Somewhere in Sussex and Anchor Bottom (Again!!)

I needed to get out, mainly to prove that I can just about last a day out on the downs. I wanted to visit Anchor Bottom to catch and record the Fragrant Orchids, our last visit being a tad early for them. However, first up was an undisclosed site in West Sussex which hosts at least a thousand Pyramidal Orchids. Yet again I was a tad early, as most of the plants are still in bud, but I was delighted to record five Bee Orchids in the fairly dense vegetation. Oddly enough the Pyramidal Orchids here are extremely long-stemmed.


Having had lunch in a sea of wild flowers I made my way to Anchor Bottom, yes, I know, again!! As my seven readers may have gathered, it is rapidly becoming a favourite. No worries, it will be birding time again soon, just as the football season starts. A complete circuit gave me Fragrant Orchids over the whole site but the major population was located on the north facing southern slope, adjacent to a host of Common Spotted Orchids.  I also noted quite a few immature Pyramidal, dotted here and there. The weather wasn't  the best for butterflies but I did have a fleeting glimpse of a Painted Lady.

A wide variety of form and hue.

Common Spotted Orchids have done well.

On the south facing bank I found the patch of Meadow Clary, Salvia pratensis and took some record shots. I also found a couple of nice Common Broomrape, Orobanche minor plants, one tightly in bud, my first recording of a holoparasitic angiosperm!!


Dropwort, Filipendula vulgaris

Felwort/Autumn Gentian? Gentianella amarella

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