The Wildlife Information Centre

Biological data for south-east and part of central Scotland

A grasshopper nymph
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TWIC Excursion to Lennoxlove, 25th July 2010

Lennoxlove, seat of the Dukes of Hamilton and home to the white Cadzow cattle (Fig. 1), was the venue for the July recording excursion, which was well attended by over a dozen recorders, in spite of it being during the holiday season. In the morning we headed west from the car park towards the woods by the Colstoun Water (Fig. 2), where a Kingfisher was seen. Other new bird records were Nuthatch and Spotted Flycatcher. Here we found the Wood Speedwell, Veronica montana, an ancient woodland indicator species. Nearby was the first of several aliens that we found, the Arrow bamboo (Pseudosasa japonica), which was providing a home for some snails, including one of our hairy-shelled species, Trochulus hispidus. The other hairy snail, Ashfordia granulata, was also present nearby (Fig. 3).

Fig. 1. Some of the white Cadzow cattle at Lennoxlove (© Adrian Sumner).

Fig. 2. The Colstoun Water flowing through the woods on the west side of the estate (© Adrian Sumner).

We returned to the car park for lunch (Fig. 4) – not a typical car park, surrounded as it was by parkland where we saw jays and woodpeckers, and hares and squirrels. The leaf litter from the adjoining ha-ha also proved to be rich in a variety of invertebrates. The afternoon saw us proceeding to the more easterly woods on the estate, where pollen beetles (probably Meligethes sp.) and soldier beetles (Rhagonycha fulva) were active on a good many flower heads; the Wood Speedwell was also found in this area. Near the sawmill, on the north side of the estate, the uncommon Hoary Willowherb (Epilobium parviflorum) was found on waste ground, as well as a number of alien plants, including Maltese Cross (Silene chalcedonica) (Fig. 5) and Stern’s Cotoneaster (Cotoneaster sternianus), the latter being a new vice-county record. Altogether a very successful outing, producing several hundred new records.

Fig. 3. The hairy-shelled snails Ashfordia granulata (left) and Trochulus hispidus (right) (© Adrian Sumner).

Fig. 4. Recorders enjoying a discussion over lunch (© Adrian Sumner).

Fig. 5. Maltese Cross, Silene chalcedonica (© Stephen Welch)

Adrian Sumner

TWIC is a company limited by guarantee - registered in Scotland No. SC234339. A recognised Scottish Charity SC034113. TWIC acknowledges financial support from Scottish Natural Heritage.