We’re all going on a flower hunt

An aborted trip to Bowland for a father’s day walk due to the double rain weather forecast left us wondering what to do. Inspired by yesterday’s orchids and somewhat sunnier weather towards Southport, 3 generations of us headed to Ainsdale for a trail through the dunes.

Some help yesterday from Phil Smith via Ron was really useful and put into practice today – I think I’ve mastered Early Marsh, but still get confused with Northern and Southern. I pegged this one as Northern in the field, but I’m not sure now?

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Not sure of these 3, which are clearly all of the same species?

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Easier were these fantastic Pyramidals – one of my favourites.

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Quite a few Bee Orchid spikes – much easier once you have your eye in.

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I think these are probably Common Spotted/Marsh hybrid – very large with spotted leaves.

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4 spikes of what I presume is Dune Helleborine were emerging together.

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Also saw one spike of Round-leaved Wintergreen, plenty of Hounds Tongue and a plethera of hazy plant name memories. I used to know all of these when I was younger – my brother works at Kew and we could have done with his knowledge today!

Butterflies were fairly quiet with just 2 Painted Lady, 3 Common Blue and a Small Tort. This Common Asparagus Beetle was keeping to type.

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Birds also pretty thin on the ground, but the highlights were a few distant Gannets, 7 Scoter, 2 GC Grebe and a pair of Stonechats.

A thoroughly enjoyable walk and the little ‘un was interested and didn’t moan once – happy days…….

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