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April 2019

posted 3 May 2019, 01:38 by Jane Arnold   [ updated 3 May 2019, 01:38 ]
common spot orchid

April has certainly been a busy month on the Green. The birds are singing loudly and whitethroats, chiffchaffs, thrushes and reed buntings (to name but a few) can all be heard. I was thrilled the other morning to hear and see a sedge warbler, amongst the rush. This is a rare vistior to the Green and hopefully it will stay and breed over the summer. The plants are also growing well and fortunately don't seem to have been affected by last year's dry weather. The adder tongue fern is starting to appear as are the common spotted orchids - they have certainly got very spotty leaves this year!.

orange tip butterfly

There is a lot of the lilac-coloured ladies smock flowering on the damper side of the Green and you can usually see orange tip butterflies flitting from plant to plant. I was pleased to get a photo of a male orange tip (with his wonderful mottle green underwings) and a female (who does not have any orange tips to her wings) sitting on a ladies smock plant. They will be mating at this time of year, after which the female lays her eggs on the ladies smock and the eggs, in turn, will develop into caterpillars. The caterpillars will then feed off the ladies smock, before developing into pupa. I don't know if this photo, was pre or post mating, but I think I did disturb them as they both flew off!


After giving a very well received talk to the Lichfield Wildlife Group in early April, I am now looking forward to leading a walk on the Green (18th May at 10.30 from the Football field car park - all welcome). Hopefully the orchids and the other plants and wildlife will be putting on a good show! Finally, the bluebells in Leomansley woods are looking lovely at the moment, but they will soon be fading, so I would recommend seeing them sooner, rather than later.