Trip ReportHot but with a pleasant breeze.
Our first encounter was with a fine male Yellowhammer that sat on a Buddleia bush just in front of us. Nearby Greenfinches called from the bushes and a Goldfinch flew over, followed shortly after by a Song Thrush. This first part of the quarry also produced a good many butterflies, namely Chalkhill Blue, Marbled White and Small Skipper with several male Oak Eggars (a moth) flying around frantically searching for females. Plants here included the beautifully fragrant Wormwood. Just as we move on a Peregrine put in a brief appearance as it cruised along the cliff tops.
Walking into the main part of the quarry our plant list increased dramatically with Broad-leaved Eyebright, Restharrow and Birdsfoot Trefoil growing at the side of the path. New butterflies were found in the shape of single Red Admiral and Painted Lady. A huge Emperor dragonfly joined us for a while.
Next we walked up on to the top of the quarry and enjoyed looking at the diversity of much older and less disturbed grassland. Squinancywort and Purging Flax were in flower here along with Stemless and Carline Thistles, Small Scabious and Hemp Agrimony. Six-spot Burnets were common up here and we found one or two rather tatty Silver-studded Blues.
Dropping down to the cliff-top path we found many more Small Skippers and Marbled Whites along with a few Graylings and an attractive little moth, the Chalk Carpet.
Finally, we found a patch of elderly Pyramid Orchids growing at the side of the path near the entrance.
Great Black-backed Gull
back to home page . . .