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Tuesday 25th July

Tuesday 25th July 2017:
It was another hot and sunny day on the Common (weather that seems like a distant memory as I type this post) and I decided to start my visit by checking out the thistle flowers at the lower terrace.

A number of Leafcutter Bees were visiting the flowers and from the photos I have taken I've managed to ID the species as Wood-carving Leaf-cutter (Megachile ligniseca).  One of the key identifying factors of this species are the graded colours of the scopa (the hairs on the underside of the abdomen that are used for carrying pollen)

Wood-carving Leaf-cutter (Megachile ligniseca)

Notable butterflies seen during the visit were 1 Marbled White, 2 ♂ Common Blue, 1 ♂ Brown Argus, 2 Small Copper and 1 Red Admiral.  

Common Blue (Polyommatus icarus)

Brown Argus (Aricia agestis)

During my walk I also discovered a Reticularia lycoperdon slime mold.  This white globular mass that can be found on dead wood isn't actually a fungus.  One of it's common names is the False Puffball due to the similarity in shape and the fact that it eventually splits open releasing a mass of brown spores.

False Puffball Slime Mold (Reticularia lycoperdon)

My final stop on the walk was at Rush Pool which sadly has now dried out to all but a 10ft by 6ft area of shallow water.  That said there were good numbers of Common Darter dragonflies here including three oviposting (egg-laying) pairs.

Common Darters (Sympetrum striolatum) egg-laying


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