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“GREENWOOD” is a place to share posts about The Nature & History of my locality

Hi, I’m Jessica, previously a natural history museum curator, research biologist in freshwater ecology, and consultant archaeomalacologist. Now retired, I spend a lot of my time just enjoying the countryside and taking photographs.

Common Blue butterfly at rest on a dry stalk with patterned underside of the wings displayed

Common Blue

I only caught a fleeting glimpse of two small butterflies with blue upper wings before one of them settled on a dry stalk and displayed the patterned underside of the wings at rest – probably more beautiful than the plain blue I was hoping to photograph. You can see the pale blue hairs on the…

Wild flowers and dry grasses on a local nature area

Views of the Nature Area 1

While flying insect pollinators are all a-buzz in the sunlight over the wild marjoram, there are still small quantities of yellow Ladies’ Bedstraw, Toadflax is beginning to open, as well as a few remaining Knapweeds available for nectar gathering. Many of the flowers on taller stemmed plants from a month ago are developing seeds now.

Black and yellow 14 Spot Ladybird on green leaf

14 Spot Ladybird

The semi-enclosed garden area behind Olympic Park in Charlton Down, where Buddleias growing along the side of the path and clumps of lavender and rosemary attract so many bees and butterflies, has a new attraction for wildlife. A group of small hazel bushes are providing not only a surprising number of nuts but also resting…

Red-coloured Robin's Pincushion, or Bedeguar Gall, on a dog rose leaf

Robin’s Pin Cushion

A Robin’s Pin Cushion, otherwise known as a Bedeguar Gall, is caused when a minute gall wasp (Diplolepis rosae of the Family Cynipidae) lays its eggs in a wild rose, usually in the leaves. The plant reacts in this characteristic way to the insertion of the egg, and the response it is thought to provide…

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