Westcountry Wildlife

Orb weaver spider – Araneidae

The spider web has to be one of natures most impressive miracles of engineering. I would have walked right by this orb weaver spider (it was exceptionally well camoflauged against the wooden post)… if I hadn’t walked straight into its sticky web! Amazingly, juvenile orb weaver spiders begin life producing perfectly regular, symmetric webs, but…

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8th May 2018

Greater Stitchwort – Stellaria Holostea

A beautiful white display of Greater Stitchwort is a common site along hedgerows and woodland paths in the South West. The bright white flowers appear from March and last well into Summer, and can produce exceptionally abundant displays. Although each flower may appear to have ten petals, there are actually only five per flower, each…

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30th April 2018

Blackthorn – Prunus Spinosa

Blackthorn is one of the quintessential hedgerow species of tree found throughout the South West. Its beautiful white blossoms appear early in the year from February to March, when they are an important source of nectar for insects emerging in this early period. They are also a crucial food plant for the caterpillars of many…

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30th April 2018

Buzzer Midge – Chironomus Plumosus

The Buzzer, Chironomous plumosus, is a species of midge that will be familiar to many anglers on our lakes, as both the adult midge and the larvae form the basis for popular and successful fly patterns for catching trout. Buzzers are often encountered in large numbers, and as their name suggests can make a considerable noise, but…

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23rd April 2018

Brown Centipede – Lithobius Forficatus

Just after writing the blog post for the millipede Cylindroiulus caeruleocinctus, I came across this Brown Centipede while clearing a dead tree from one of the footpaths around Wimbleball lake, which makes for the perfect comparison between the two classes. The flatter body with larger segments, and Fewer, larger legs are dead giveaways. As I mentioned…

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23rd April 2018