Friday, 17 April 2009

River Deele

The River Deele is always good for some interesting shots. This is one of the Nemouridae - a Stonefly. These are rarely seen, since they spend the bulk of their lives as nymphs under stones in rivers. The adults are short-lived, generally having no mouthparts.

Butterbur has put up its flower spikes all the way along the river bank:

This is the last stages of the Coprinid Bolbitius vitellinus. You have to be up early to see these ones in pristine condition: they generally only last a day or two at most.

I always think that the early, uncurling, fronds of ferns have a distinctly animal look about them. Scaly Male Fern:

Hartstongue Fern:

Ramsons, or Wild Garlic, is just about to flower. The flowerheads come pre-packed in a protective sheath:

There's a very interesting story behind this fungal rust on the Ramsons. Many rusts have two hosts - 'alternate hosts'. The two hosts don't have to be remotely related, and the alternate host for this Puccinia sessilis is Reed Canary Grass - Phalaris arundinacea. So the rust spends the summer months on Ramsons and the winter months on Reed Canary Grass. That's all very well, but I haven't found Reed Canary Grass within 25 miles of this spot. Spores are airborne, so I presume the spores travel quite some distance to travel between their summer and winter homes.

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