Monthly Archives: April 2015

Orange Tip Butterfly

Thanks to Vivien Crump, who sent in this fine photo of an Orange Tip butterfly (Anthocharis cardamines), resting on a Groundsel plant….

orange tip on groundsel 19 Apr  2015

The butterfly was photographed on the Radford Bridge Road Allotments in Wollaton.

In my last blog post I mentioned that the plot holders were recently given a notice to quit.  Here is a description of the current state of affairs from gardener Sue :

“The tenant gardeners of the Radford Bridge Road Garden Holders’ Association site off Russell Drive, Wollaton, have been issued with a legal Notice to Quit the site by April 2nd 2016.  We have no information on whether or not the developers have a timescale for the start of clearance work, but we do know that they have not yet submitted their Reserved Matters application to the Nottingham City Council in order to achieve Full Planning Consent.  It is good for the gardeners to know they at least have this year to continue to work their plots, but the developer’s commitment in their Outline Planning documentation to help us relocate seamlessly from current to new plot appears to be rather tenuous when we are faced with eviction and with the requirement to remove all our gardening equipment off site in the chance that we might be able to relocate, who knows when.   The practicalities of the latter exercise are horrendous; how on earth do you store shed, greenhouse, water butts, fruit cages, raised beds……  I personally took on an allotment because I only have a small back garden, so I will have to abandon my ‘paraphernalia’  and risk having to compensate the developers for not clearing my plot.  Not good, is it.”

As she says, it doesn’t sound good – either for gardeners or for the wildlife found on this threatened site.

Birds feeding – but given notice to quit….

Thanks to Vivien Crump, who sent some pictures of birds using feeders on the Radford Bridge Road Allotments in Wollaton….

…..Goldfinches (Carduelis carduelis) and Lesser Redpolls (Carduelis cabaret)….

Goldfinch and redpolls

…and a Great Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos major)……

Great spotted Woodpecker

Unfortunately, this could well be the last year these birds will be able to use these feeders on the allotments, which are threatened by a controversial development plan.   Gardeners were recently given a legal notice to quit, and so must vacate by April next year.  Sadly it seems that the days of this wildlife-rich old allotment site are numbered.

Red Kite

An exciting photo today from regular contributor Nic Cairns – a Red Kite (Milvus milvus), seen over St.Ann’s Allotments….

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This fascinating bird of prey, whose distinctive forked tail makes it easy to identify in flight, has not been photographed over the allotments before.  Very common historically, and very familiar to city dwellers as scavengers (Shakespeare referred to London as a “city of kites and crows”) it was persecuted almost to extinction, with only a handful of birds surviving in mid-Wales by the early 20th century.

Its subsequent recovery since the 1990s due to a reintroduction programme is a great conservation success story, and it has increased in numbers and range in several parts of the UK…..

redkite_tcm9-83430It’s great that the bird can be seen in Nottingham again, and hopefully it will continue to expand in the East Midlands, and become a familiar sight once again above our city.

Dunkirk & Lenton Wildflower Day – 14 April

Dunkirk & Lenton Partnership Forum are organising a Wildflower Day next Tuesday, 14th April.  Join them for a walk between green spaces in the area, whilst sowing bee-friendly wildflower seeds.

bees  The walk itinerary is as follows…..

Church Square, Lenton, 1pm
Radford/Lenton Library Community Garden, 1:45pm,
Radford Recreation Ground, 2:15pm
Memorial Garden, Ilkeston Road, 3pm

At the end of the walk, there will be FREE bakery and craft stalls in the Memorial Garden, next to Radford Health Centre on Ilkeston Road – from 3pm. For more information on the event, ring 0115 958 8590.

Open Day at Skylarks Nature Reserve

The Wildlife Trust are planning an open day at Skylarks Nature Reserve…..

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Worth a visit…..

 

Stump-eating Fungi

I saw some interesting fungi on the stump of a dead street tree in Carrington the other day…..

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The stump – my guess is it was a Plane or Maple – is now an impressive fungal habitat, not so often seen by a main road.  Fruiting bodies of two different species of fungus were evident…..

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My best guess for this one is the Blueing Bracket, Postia subcaesia.

As to the other, less-abundant fruiting bodies….they look to me like Oyster Mushroom (Pleurotus ostreatus), which are excellent eating.  Unfortunately I wasn’t sure enough to try them.

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It’s unusual to see such fungal abundance in such a setting.  Is anyone able to offer an opinion on the identity of these species?