Westcountry Wildlife

Garlic Mustard – Alliaria Petiolata

Garlic mustard, or “Jack-by-the-hedge”, is one of the oldest plants to be used to flavour dishes, and it certainly gives off a lovely savoury aroma when crushed. Although it certainly can be eaten, it is not as palatable as ramsons (wild garlic) and I’m personally not a big fan, even though I love wild foraging.…

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16th May 2018

Red Rumex Weevil – Apion Frumentarium

Now it’s no secret that I love a good beetle, and that goes double for a lovely little weevil like this Red Rumex Weevil here! As the name Rumex suggests, this weevil feeds on docks and sorrels, and so unlike many other weevils is not considered an agricultural pest. They like to hide on the…

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16th May 2018

Cuckoo flower / Lady’s smock – Cardamine Pratensis

Lady’s smock is one of the earlier wildflowers to carpet our meadows in the South West, and one I always look forward to seeing after the long winter months. The flowers can vary from pale lilac or pink to almost white, and the slender upright leaves can have a distinct blue tinge to them –…

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8th May 2018

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