Wednesday, 25 June 2008

The Concrete Road

There is a concrete road leading to the old radar station in the Wood, built by Canadian soldiers. The view looking back towards Deal and the sea is wide, giving a heart-lifting feeling whenever we walk there.
It is exposed to the north-east wind, but for some reason it gives a good feeling - maybe it's on a ley-line?
The closely-cropped fields either side hold a good variety of flowers - eyebright, speedwell, pimpernel, clovers, hawkbit, mignonette, seal-heal, yellow rattle, red bartsia, an occasional pyramidal orchid and many others - I even found a solitary hounds-tongue.
This tiny blue flower has eluded my identification so far - any ideas? And while we're at it, whatever is this bug, which looks like a hoverfly with grasshopper's legs - it moved like a grasshopper too. [Late's a Wasp Beetle - thanks Greenie!]

On the Goats Field, the small patch of unspoilt downland had a similarly wide variety in its small area, even including a handful of broomrapes.
On 21st June last year, there were two little Little Owls on the usual stump, and now (a couple of days later) what do we see.....?
Yay! Two more!


Anonymous said...

Enjoyed reading your blog again , thought the Little Owls were great . The little blue flower looks like a Speedwell from this distance , but could not say which one , my book lists over two dozen. Better luck with the "Hoverfly with Grasshopper's legs ",
It is a Wasp Beetle - Clytus arietus .

Kingsdowner said...

Thanks Greenie (who is that masked man?).
The flower was tiny, no more than a couple of mm, so maybe too small for a speedwell?
As for the Wasp Beetle, NBN shows it present in only one East Kent sector (Thanet, not here), explaining why I didn't recognise it. Cool.

Mary said...

Three cheers for the cute baby owls! How consistent they are! I hope no one ever touchs that stump! The fields and flowers are lovely, too. That is an interesting wasp beetle! I was trying to imagine if moving like a grasshopper. Very nice post as always!

dean said...

I would say that the blue flower is bang on for Wall Speedwell. Saw some exactly the same the other day.

Sandpiper (Lin) said...

Wonderful pictures. I don't know if you have the same flowers as us, but it looks like something we call Corn Speedwell. I would at least look in that general direction. This site shows a picture.

Oh, now I see that Dean has mentioned a type of Speedwell, too.

Kingsdowner said...

Thanks for the help guys!

The young owls are still showing themselves, but are shy of cameras at the moment.

John Young said...

Nice post. To me the plant looks like a small version of green alkanet.

abbey meadows said...

I agree with Dean the blue flower looks like Wall speedwell. The lower leaves which are not visible in the photo are different in shape to the hairy upper leaves.
Quality shots as ever.