Monthly Archives: August 2019

Shibden Valley 18-08-2019

Here are a few close-ups from the Shibden Valley.
Some taken yesterday but most from the Halifax Scientific Society walk on the 18th of August.
A great turn-out, 21 in all.
I for one found it fascinating to have Peachysteve teach us to identify all the plant species we could find in a single kilometre square on the map. Results to follow.
Hope everyone enjoyed the day which became slightly chaotic at times.
I’d like to do a similar route next year and again survey the same map square. 
Sorry we missed out the little talk I had planned,
sketching out the geology of the valley and its exploitation. Maybe next year!
Antitype chi, the Grey Chi moth, resting on a wall at the top of Lee Lane.
You can just see the X (the Greek letter ‘chi’) on its wing.
A woodland and scrub orchid, the broad-leaved helleborine, a little past its best.
Here’s a quotation from the Woodland Trust’s website:

‘Some species of wasp and bee that are attracted to Broad-leaved Helleborines have been noted as becoming ‘intoxicated’ after visiting these orchids for nectar – it appears that the flowers can contain a kind of alcohol as a result of a fungus! The bees like it so much, they come back for more, ensuring the flower is pollinated.’
Rough chervil, common in many places elsewhere in the country
but Peachysteve’s first record for Calderdale.
Alder tongue, a gall on the developing female catkin caused by a fungus.
The fungus, Taphrina alni, chemically induces the tree to create this structure which it inhabits.
Later, the tongue will become deep red. Spores will be released from it to repeat the life cycle.
Russula virescens, the green brittlegill
2019-08-25T10:01:00+01:00August 25th, 2019|0 Comments

Giant Wood Wasp

Incredible Farm at Lumbutts has a photo which looks suspiciously like Greater Horntail Wasp (Giant Wood Wasp) Urocerus gigas. The NBN atlas shows no records for Calderdale. This wood boring saw fly attacks conifers and is native to North Africa. The insect is harmless despite its appearance.
The photo taken at Incredible Farm but on facebook page of Michael C Smith who works there. 6th August.

Anyone come across this insect before?

2019-08-21T11:33:00+01:00August 21st, 2019|0 Comments

Luddenden Dean fungi

The above images are of the Scarletina Bolete (Neoboletus luridiformis)
It is identified by the red dots on a yellow stipe,
red pores (instead of gills), yellow spore tubes, and a brown, velvety cap.
It’s flesh turns quickly blue when cut (see image above).

The above two images are of the Grey Spotted Amanita (Amanita excelsa var. spissa)
I got very excited thinking I’d found a Panther Cap, but Peachy Steve put me on the right track.
Panther Caps do not have striations on the stipe ring (which this did), 
and they also have a distinct rim to the volval sack that the fruit body emerges from. 

Another Amanita. This time, The Blusher (Amanita rubescens).
You can see the the pink ‘blush’, at the stipe base, where it has been damaged by slugs.

The above image is of the Dung Loving Psilocybe (Deconica coprophila).

2019-08-20T14:57:00+01:00August 20th, 2019|0 Comments

Crimsworth Dean Clough Scramble-3rd August 2019

Devil’s-bit Scabious (Succisa pratensis)
Antler moth(Cerapteryx graminis) on ragwort
Wolf’s milk slime mould (Lycogala terrestre-plasmodium stage)
Looking for another route!
Fern hunting
Laurence and Sarah
Laurence studying a slime mould
Intrepid explorers!

2019-08-15T16:26:00+01:00August 15th, 2019|0 Comments

Garden Butterflies And Moths

Late July to early August and probably my best two weeks or so of garden mothing ever.
Just wandering around my modest sized, suburban garden with a net, old Coolpix camera and head torch has produced some very interesting and exciting finds.
Around 50 species of nocturnal moths and nine butterfly species were recorded,
two of which are probably new to Calderdale.
Some highlights are – Clockwise:
Broad Bordered Yellow Underwing nectaring on the Buddleia – nice to see one feeding peacefully in the still of night rather than fighting for space in a moth trap.

Dark Green Fritillary feeding along side six Painted Ladies – rare enough out and about in the Calderdale countryside but this one was underneath my bedroom window.

True Lover’s Knot – a real surprise this one, maybe the larva had fed on cultivated Heathers nearby.

Small Clouded Knot-horn (Phycitodes saxicola) – netted after dark – with it’s need for dissection to secure an ID it re-sparked my interest in having a go myself. A very interesting and rewarding field of study in it’s own right.
Azalea Leaf Miner – with just a handful of Yorkshire records I suspect it may be either overlooked, misidentified or maybe just not that strongly attracted to light.

Heart and Dart along with a Copper Underwing agg. – both feeding busily with their proboscis poking in to the Buddleia flowers.

And a Cacao Moth along with my annotated attempt at dissecting it – if you ever wondered what the reproductive bits of a micro moth moth look like then here you go 🙂
2019-08-12T10:28:00+01:00August 12th, 2019|0 Comments


Lots of Butterflies at Clock Face Quarry this afternoon. Peacock, Painted Lady, Large White, Meadow Brown, Ringlet, Speckled Wood, Small Tortoiseshell. Sadly no Clouded Yellow.

2019-08-08T17:51:00+01:00August 8th, 2019|0 Comments
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