30 Aug 2023

Conservation Volunteers – Conkers, Gatekeepers and Eels

Conservation Volunteers

Tuesday 11 July 2023

Maud & Hazel – The Horse Chestnut, whilst looking generally good with lots of conkers, had visible leaf damage from insects.

The Pear tree was looking the best we have ever seen and still had fruits developing.

Chris & Colin – Flock of about 12 goldfinches eating wildflower seeds in Cae Gwair, also a few swallows flying over this meadow. A Hornet’s nest in the base of the tree behind where the old farm house stood.

Meadow pipit parachute display over Cae Blaen.

16th July

David – Plenty of Dragonflies and Damselflies this year, especially at Llyn Felin Gat. Lots of black tailed skimmer on Pwll yr Ardd.

25th July/ 1st August

All – took part in the UK wide Big Butterfly Count. Surveys done in Cae Trawscoed, Cae Gwair, Cae Derwen, Cae Circus, Wild Garden, Wallace Garden and Apothecary’s Garden.

Most common butterfly was Gatekeeper – also recorded were Small Tortoiseshell, Common Blue, Large White, Small White, Peacock, Meadow Brown And the Silver Y moth.

1st August

Peter – In the Great Glasshouse the White Dapperling fungus, Leucoagaricus leucothites.

Amazing number of Gatekeepers and Red Admiral butterflies outside.

8th August

Noticeable expansion of burnet saxifrage across Cae Trawscoed, and of betony across Cae Derwen.

Peter – Fungi Foray with Nicky. A lot of fungi have appeared due to recent wet weather.

Blackening Waxcap -Hygrocybe conica on the external lawn around the Great Glasshouse. 

In the wood to the left of the Arboretum…………..

Fairy Inkcap Coprinellus disseminatus

Common Stump Brittlestem Psathyrella piluliformis

Velvet Shield Pluteus umbrosus

We also found a small Lepiota with a strong smell (Lepiota cristata maybe) and several tiny parachute fungi.

Hazel, Gilly & Poppy (Gilly’s granddaughter)

There were still fruits on the Pear tree by Spring Woods. The insect damage on the Alder & Horse Chestnut does not seem to have spread any further. Also the Horse Chestnut had a very plentiful supply of conkers filling out well.

David – Eels filmed by Horn Bridge

John – heard there was a family of Polecats on the cycle path on the western edge of site.

15th August

All – pulled out some Himalayan balsam from the northern side of the site

Peter – Sticky Bolete Suillus viscidus and Chanterelle Cantharellus cibarius in Pont Felin Gat

22nd August

Devil’s bit scabious coming into flower and continuing to spread across Cae Trawscoed. A good year for autumn hawkbit on Cae Trawscoed and Cae Gwair.

Lots of colourful fibrecap fungi in Fairy Wood as well as a first recording of the strong smelling stocking webcap Cortinarius torvus.  Fungi popping out in Spring woods including the elastic saddle fungus Helvella elastica.