Wildlife photos and info from around the world

Wildlife photos and info from around the world

Andrew HodgsonYes, I'm Andy (or Andrew to most people, but hey, that wouldn't make a catchy sounding website name would it?).  In my spare time I love nothing more than getting out and about and doing nature photography, partly to 'collect' memories of what I see, and also to celebrate the great beauty and diversity of the natural world with others.

View Nature Profiles, the key area on the website that's growing regularly with original photos and some scientific information on many species from around the world. I've got a real passion for reptiles, but Britain isn't the best spot in the world to satisfy that interest, so I've learnt to appreciate and photograph all sorts of other stuff.  Whatever the season, and whatever the place, there's always something interesting to be found.

Monks Dale NNR in late summer

I recently visited one of my favourite parts of Derbyshire - Monks (or Monk's, depending on where you look!) Dale, near Tideswell.  It's one of the best ancient woodlands in Derbyshire, with several rare species found in abundance there.  An added area of interest is the calcareous stream that runs through the dale all year round, unlike the other limestone dales.  This provides habitat for other rare species, such as Blysmus compressus (Flat-sedge), Butterwort, and several rare mosses. 

Blysmus compressus

On the visit, Tom Blockeel and I found only the second Derbyshire occurrence of Philonotis calcarea, a moss of base-rich marshes common further north, but extremely rare in VC57.  There is also a significant population of the rare tufa moss Platydictya jungermannioides, and Derbyshire's largest population of the tiny liverwort Cololejeunea calcarea in Peter Dale, the northern extension of the site, and probably the largest population of Pleurochaete squarrosa, a southern moss of soil pockets on limestone.  See the English Bryophytes section for more photos.

Philonotis calcarea

Another joy of the visit was to see both woodland Campanula species flowering, with Giant Bellflower (C.latifolia) in great abundance on the woodland slopes in the northern half of the dale.  Nettle-leaved Bellflower was also present, but in much scarcer quantities.  Herb Paris (Paris quadrifolia) was also looking very fine, bearing its dark autumn berries.  Monks Dale is the best site in Derbyshire for this ancient woodland species.

Campanula latifolia

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