Thursday 21 July 2016

Rambling around Ardnave Sunday 17th July - next, the Billion Year Gap!

The weather was kind yet again, despite our ramble occurring just before this week's heatwave! Our intrepid party of 11 set off clockwise around Ardnave point, encountering lots of wildflowers on the way, including Bog Asphodel, lots of Lady's Bedstraw and Pineapple weed. We investigated the smell of these last two, commenting on the pineapple-like appearance of the flower, as well as the smell of pineapple, and the ancient use of lady's bedstraw as a flea-repellent - in the past, the dried plants were used to stuff mattresses as the coumarin scent of the plants acts as a flea killer - hence the name. It obviously doesn't repel moths, as shown by this photo from the other week!
Small Elephant Hawkmoth on Lady's Bedstraw
Bog Asphodel

You'll find a full list of what we saw below.

Join us too this Sunday 24th July for a Geology rAmble at Kilchiaran entitled 'The Billion Year Gap', where we'll be looking at some of the oldest rocks in the world! You'll find that within a few metres is a billion years of geological history! Mindblowing. The walk will be led by David Webster whose knowledge of Islay's rocks will enthuse and leave you awestruck. Meet at Kilchiaran at 2pm: please park responsibly either in layby by the old chapel or by the farm track with the information board (please do not obscure access). The walk will last c.1.5-2 hours, and there will be plants and other natural delights to discover too. We have a small charge to help towards the running of the Trust: £2 for members and £4 for non members. See you there!

Plants: ragged robin, red bartsia, red clover, white clover, selfheal, meadowsweet, purple loosestrife, silverweed, marsh ragwort, germander speedwell, yarrow, yellow flag iris, bog asphodel, lady's bedstraw, common storksbill, spearthistle, marsh thistle, lesser meadow rue, harebell, bog pimpernel, mint, wild thyme, birdsfoot trefoil, mouse ear hawkbit, orchids.

Birds: Hooded crow, starlings, buzzard, sandmartins, chough, mute swans with cygnets, meadow pipit, skylark.

Mammals: rabbit, grey seals.

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