Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Exciting Finds on Staughton Moor (VC31)

Pete Stroh has been down in the arable 'prairies' of Staughton Moor in the far south of Huntingdonshire. Its well away from the botanical hotspots of the county so is under investigated, but it does have its own character and is the centre of distribution in the county for the rare Spiked Star-of-Bethlehem (Ornithogalum pyrenaicum).

Pete's trip was motivated by the need to record his plots for the National Plant Monitoring Scheme. His arable plot turned out to be a disappointment this year with nothing present but the wheat crop. However, not far away he found thriving populations of two county rarities. These were Bur Chervil (Anthriscus caucalis) which was over-topping the crop in places, and the even rarer Shepherd's-needle (Scandix pecten-veneris). Pete providing the following photos to share. If anyone else has spotted either of these two species in VC31 (or VC64) I would be pleased to receive details.

Shepherd's-needle (photo by Pete Stroh)

 Bur Chervil over-topping the wheat crop (photo by Pete Stroh)

Bur Chervil (Photo by Curtis Clarke as published on Wikimedia Commons)

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