Wednesday, 21 June 2017

1000 species challenge


Meadow grassland at Westmeston Church - not as many species as earlier in the year
Introduction

As part of the summer's activities of Pan-Species listers a challenge was set to see if it was possible to reach 1000 species of natural history subjects recorded in a day. This target was achieved by Graeme Lyons and Dave Green with a flourish. The achievement of a thousand species in twenty four hours is truly impressive, and there are several reasons why my wife and I fell very short of the figure. For a start, we were laid-back about starting and didn’t get off the ground until after 9 am. Another factor was that we did not use any traps nor things like beating trays and pooters, and we did no pond dipping. The latest score for us is 420 species after checking identifications etc. We included badger and mole, having seen an active sett and mole hills which were fresh.

Volucella inflata in a sunny spot in Blackbrook Wood
We did little planning, and certainly no visits to check out sites before the day. We thought the best thing to do was to visit as many habitats as possible. Woodland was a bit poor for us. Blackbrook Wood was very shaded, and we got few lichens. The grounds of Sussex University used to hold fantastic elm trees with a rich lichen flora. On the day, I did not see a single lichen on elm. For a professional lichenologist to see just 35 lichen species is pathetic!

View across the floodplain at Amberley
Perhaps our best site was the chalk grassland on Bo Peep. Here I found Dianthus plumarius in a site where it has been for many years. Here we also recorded a Small Blue butterfly. We did go all the way to Amberley Wildbrooks which took a lot of time, and this was probably not justified with the low number of extra species we saw, which included five species of damselfly and the sedge Carex vulpina which was particularly pleasing.

It was a great day, and we learned a lot about how to cram the most rewarding sites into a short period of time. More planning would have helped as would restricting ourselves to short distance sites. One thing I did find is that keeping an eye out for species in all groups is particularly demanding. Listing birds while looking out for lichens with a x10 hand lens is not easy. Looking out for higher plants as well as bryophytes can also be confusing.

It has crossed our minds that we might do another similar exercise at the beginning of July and perhaps even the beginning of every month. It was fun. It is one of the most attractive sides to Pan Listing that all groups are included. If we do carry out a more regular challenge, we plan to plan ahead!

Group Totals

Algae 1
Amphibians 1
Arachnida 3
Birds 35
Bryophytes 11
Coleoptera 1
Crustacea 1
Diptera 11
Fungi 5
Hemiptera 2
Higher Plants 280
Hymenoptera 9
Lepidoptera 12
Lichens 35
Mammals 5
Mollusca 2
Odonata 5
Orthoptera 1

Total 420 species


In some cases, species were recorded from the car while driving between sites. My wife Amanda did the driving. A note of the positions of these sites was taken, and a full report with grid references will be prepared for the Biological Records Centre.

1. Ditchling

Amphibians

Common Frog

Arachnida

Pholcus phalangoides
Steatoda nobilis

Birds

Blackbird
Carrion Crow
Chiffchaff
Collared Dove
House Sparrow
Jackdaw
Linnet
Robin
Wren

Diptera

Musca domestica
Tipula paludosa

Fungi

Agaricus campestris
Puccinia malvacearum
Puccinia striiformis

Higher Plants

Acer campestre
Acer pseudoplatanus
Achillea millifolium
Anagallis arvensis
Arrhenatherum elatius
Bellis perennis
Brachypodium sylvaticum
Bromus hordeaceus
Calystegia sepium
Capsella bursa pastoris
Cardamine hirsuta
Carex pendula
Centaurea nigra
Cerastium fontanum
Coronopus didymus
Crataegus monogyna
Crepis capillaris
Epilobium ciliatum
Epilobium montanum
Euphorbisa peplus
Festuca rubra
Fragaria vesca
Fraxinus excelsior
Galium aparine
Geranium molle
Geranium robertianum
Geum urbanum
Hedera helix
Heracleum sphondylium
Holcus lanatus
Hyacinthoides non scriptus
Lamium amplexicaule
Lapsana communis
Leontodon autumnalis
Leucanthemum vulgare
Ligustrum ovalifolium
Lolium perenne
Lotus coniculatus
Medicago lupulina
Myosotis arvensis
Myosotis sylvatica
Orchis morio
Oxalis procumbens
Pinus sylvestris
Plantago lanceolata
Plantago major
Poa annua
Poa pratensis
Polygonum aviculare
Potentilla anserina
Potentilla reptans
Prunella vulgaris
Quercus robur
Ranunculus acris
Ranunculus repens
Rosa canina
Rubus ulmifolius
Rumex acetosa
Rumex crispus
Sagina procumbens
Salix caprea
Sambucus nigra
Senecio vulgaris
Silene dioica
Sonchus asper
Tanacetum parthenium
Taraxacum officinale agg.
Trifolium dubium
Trifolium repens
Urtica dioica
Valerianella locusta
Veronica persica
Vulpia myurum
Hymenoptera

Apanteles glomeratus – pupal cases
Apis mellifera
Bombus hypnorum
Bombus lapidarius
Bombus pascuorum
Bombus pratorum
Bombus terrestris
Bombus vestalis

Lepidoptera

Speckled Wood
Tinea perionella

Lichens

Caloplaca citrina
Candelariella aurella
Hypotrachyna revoluta
Lecanora albescens
Lecanora chlarotera
Lecanora dispersa
Lecanora orosthea
Parmelia sulcata

Mammals

Badger Sett
Mole – Fresh mole hills

Mollusca

Helix aspersa

2. Ditchling – a paddock with unimproved pasture

Birds

Blue Tit
Common Whitethroat
Dunnock
Great-spotted Woodpecker
Song Thrush
Starling
Willow Warbler
Wood Pigeon

Diptera

Bombylius major
Lucilia caesar
Scaeva pyrastri
Syrphus ribesi
Volucella bombylans
Volucella pellucens

Higher Plants

Agrimonia eupatoria
Alopecurus pratensis
Arabidopsis thaliana
Carex curta
Carex flacca
Carex hirta
Carex nigra
Cirsium arvensis
Cirsium vulgare
Dactylis glomerata
Deschampsia cespitosa
Dipsacus fullonum
Equisetum arvense
Filipendula ulmaria
Genista tinctoria
Glechoma hederacea
Hypericum tetrapterum
Iris pseudacorus
Juncus conglomeratus
Juncus effusus
Juncus inflexus
Lathyrus pratensis
Lotus pedicularis
Oenanthe crocata
Persicaria maculosa
Phleum arvense
Prunus x fruticans
Pulicaria dysenterica
Senecio erucifolius
Silaum silaus
Sinapis arvensis
Stachys sylvatica
Stellaria graminea
Vicia cracca
Vicia hirsuta
Vicia sativa

Lepidoptera
Blood-vein
Burnet Companion
Chrysoteuchia culmella
Common Blue
Large Skipper
Meadow Brown
Small Heath
Straw Dot

Lichens

Physcia tenella
Xanthoria parietina

Orthoptera

Chorthippus parallelus – nymph

3. Common Lane, Ditchling

Flowering Plants

Arctium lappa
Hordeum murinum

4. Ditchling Common

Ulex europaea

5. Blackbrook Wood

Arachnida

Mitopus morio

Birds

* Nuthatch

Bryophytes

* Atrichum undulatum
* Brachythecium rutabulum
* Kindbergia praelonga
* Mnium hornum
* Orthotrichum affine
* Ulota crispa

Diptera

* Eupeades corallae
* Volucella inflata

Fungi

* Puccinia cancina ribesii-pendulae

Hemiptera

* Grypocoris stysi

Higher Plants

* Anemone nemorosa
* Anthriscus sylvestris
* Betula pendula
* Carex divulsa
* Carex remota
* Carex sylvatica
* Carpinus betulus
* Circaea lutetiana
* Corylus avellana
* Digitalis purpurea
* Dryopteris dilatata
* Euphorbia amygdaloides
* Hypericum androsaemum
* Ilex aquifolium
* Lonicera periclymenum
* Lysimachia nemorum
* Moerhingia trinervia
* Pteridium aquilinum
* Rosa arvensis
* Rumex latifolius
* Scrophularia nodosa
* Stellaria holostea

Hymenoptera

* Vespula vulgaris

Lepidoptera

* Red Admiral

Lichens

* Flavoparmelia caperata
* Graphis scripta
* Phlyctis argena
* Ochrolechia subviridis
* Punctelia subrudecta

6. Railway Crossing, Spatham Lane

Birds

* Magpie

Higher Plants

* Aesculus hippocastanus
* Equisteum telmateia
* Fagus sylvatica
* Malva sylvestris

7. Westmeston Church

Algae

* Trentepohlia aurea

Bryophytes

* Grimmia pulvinata
* Gyroweisia tenuis
* Homalothecium sericeum
* Rhytidiadelphus squarrosus

Fungi

* Puccinia iridis

Higher Plants

* Anisantha sterilis
* Asplenium adiantum nigeum
* Convolvulus arvensis
* Dryopteris filix mas
* Geranium dissectum
* Hordeum secalinum
* Hypericum perforatum
* Iris foetidissimum
* Linaria purpurea
* Phyllitis scolopendrium
* Poa trivialis
* Primula veris
* Symphoricarpos rivularis
* Taxus baccata
* Veronica chamaedrys
* Viola riviniana

Lichens

* Amandinea punctata
* Belonia nidarosiensis
* Caloplaca flavescens
* Candelariella vitellina
* Catillaria chalybeia
* Diploicia canescens
* Dirina massiliense sorediata
* Lecanora expallens
* Lepraria incana
* Lepraria lobificans
* Llimonaea sorediata
* Opegrapha calcarea
* Pertusaria flavicans
* Porpidia tuberculosa
* Tephromela atra
* Verrucaria nigrescens

8. East of Westmeston

Higher Plants

* Ligustrum vulgare

9. Plumpton Lewes Turn

Higher Plants

* Aegopodium podagraria
* Hypochaeris radicata
* Sisymbrium officinale

10. Lewes

Birds

* Black-headed Gull
* Herring Gull

Higher Plants

* Brassica napus
* Campanula persicifolia
* Chenocpodium album

11. Lewes Roundabout on A27

Higher Plants

* Centranthus ruber
* Reseda luteola
* Rosa rubiginosa
* Senecio jacobaea
* Smyrnium olusatrum
* Sonchus arvensis
* Sonchus oleraceus

12. Between Beddingham and Firle

Higher Plants

* Hirschfeldia incana
* Onobrychis viciifolia

13. Firle and Road to the Beacon

Higher Plants

* Chamaerion angustifolium
* Silene longifolia
* Silene vulgaris

14. Firle Beacon

Birds

* Skylark

Higher Plants

* Ranunculus bulbosus

15. Selmeston

Higher Plants

* Artemisia vulgaris
* Conium maculatum
* Cornus sanguinea
* Brassica nigra

16. Road to Bo Peep

Birds

* Common Pheasant

Higher Plants

* Epilobium hirsutum
* Listera ovata

17. Bo Peep

Birds

* Meadow Pipit
* Red-legged Partridge
* Yellowhammer

Bryophytes

Homalothecium lutescens

Diptera

* Chloromyia formosa

Higher Plants

* Anthyllis vulneraria
* Ballota nigra
* Briza media
* Bromopsis erecta
* Carduus nutans
* Carduus tenuiflorus
* Carex panicea
* Carlina vulgaris
* Centaurea scabiosa
* Cruciata laevipes
* Dactylorhiza fuchsii
* Dianthus plumarius – three plants
* Echium vulgare
* Galium verum
* Gymnadenia conopsea
* Helianthemum nummularium
* Hippocrepis comosa
* Knautia arvensis
* Leontodon hispidus
* Linum catharticum
* Papaver rhoeas
* Phleum pratense
* Pilosella officinarum
* Polygala vulgaris
* Reseda lutea
* Rhinanthus minor calcareus
* Rubus caesius
* Thymus praecox
* Trifolium campestre
* Trifolium pratense
* Tripleurospermum inodorum
* Verbascum thapsus

Lepidoptera

* Small Blue

18. Below Bo Peep

Birds

* Chaffinch

Higher Plants

* Arum maculatum
* Brachypodium pinnatum
* Cirsium acaule
* Linaria vulgaris
* Poa nemoralis
* Potentilla anglica
* Rubus idaeus
* Sanguisorba minor
* Tamus communis
Veronica hederifolia

19. Main Road North of Falmer

Higher Plants

* Lavatera arborea

20. Eastern Brighton By-pass

Higher Plants

* Foeniculum vulgare
* Juniperus communis
* Lathyrus latifolius

21. Brighton – Hangleton Turn

Mammals

* Fox – dead

22. Shoreham Turn towards Steyning

Higher Plants

* Avena fatua
* Clematis vitalba
* Petasites fragrans

23. Steyning By-pass

Mammals

Rabbit

Higher Plants

* Buddleja davidii
* Lepidium draba
* Salix cinerea

24. Wiston

Higher Plants

* Alliaria petiolata

25. A 24 – Ashington

Higher Plants

* Geranium pyrenaicum

26. Washington

Higher Plants

* Oenothera glazioviana
* Populus balsaminifera

27. Amberley

Hemiptera

* Aphis rumicis

Higher Plants

* Cymbalaria muralis
* Erigeron karvinskianus
* Eupatoria cannabinum
* Papaver somniferum
* Parietaria Judaica
* Pseudofumaria lutea
* Symphytum officinale
* Veronica arvensis

28. Amberley Wildbrooks

Birds

* Barn Swallow
* Goldfinch
* House Martin
* Lesser Whitethroat
* Mallard
Mute Swan

Coleoptera

* Gyrinus substriatus

Crustacea

* Oniscus asellus

Diptera

* Episyrphus balteatus

Hemiptera

Aphis fabae

Higher Plants

* Alcea rosea
* Alnus glutinosa
* Asparagus officinalis
* Carex otrubae
* Carex vulpina
* Centaurea montana
* Equisetum palustre
* Festuca pratensis
* Glyceria maxima
* Lemna minor
* Lunaria annua
* Lycopus europaeus
* Matricaria discoidea
* Melilotus officinalis
* Myosotis scorpioides
* Potamogeton natans
* Sagittaria sagittifolia
* Salix triandra
* Stellaria media
* Valeriana officinalis

Odonata

* Calopteryx splendens
* Coenagrion puella
* Coenagrion pulchellum
* Ischnura elegans
* Pyrrhosoma nymphula

29. Sussex University – Falmer Park

Visited for the lichens on elms. Only one elm seen which was too old and dry barked to support any lichens.

Higher Plants

* Tilia x vulgaris
* Ulmus procera

Lichens

* Evernia prunastri
* Melanelixia subaurifera
* Physcia adscendens
* Physconia grisea

Mammals

* Grey Squirrel

30. Falmer Pond

Birds

* Greylag Goose
* Moorhen

Higher Plants

* Tragopogon pratense

31. Road to Devil’s Dyke

Higher Plants

* Filipendula vulgaris
* Iris orientalis

32. Devil’s Dyke – Copse by Pub

Higher Plants

* Acer cappadocicum

33. Burgess Hill access of the A23

Higher Plants

* Centaurium erythraea
* Daucus carota
* Dactylorhiza prate
* Dactylorhiza pratermissa junialis
* Epilobium parviflorum
* Lathyrus nissolia
* Malva moschata
* Ophrys apifera
* Sison amomum
* Vicia tetrasperma

Molluscs

* Monacha cantiana


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