Wednesday, 7 September 2016

Kenfig NNR scraped slacks

The deep scrape in the south-west of compartment 3
The above scrape is deeper than most slacks in the south of the reserve and the muddy, rather than usual sandy substrate is exposed much later than most adjacent slacks. The dry crusty margin visible in the photo mostly comprises dried up charophytes (Tolypella glomerata identifiable, but others too far gone), but various bryophytes are admixed, the most notable of which is Drepanocladus sendtneri (photos below - voucher retained if required for checking). After spending much time pondering over my specimen, it was relief to find Sam had already recorded the species at this location in December 2011, presumably in much wetter conditions than those shown above.

On the inward (i.e. deeper) edge of the Tolypella crust, in the south-west sector of the scrape, was an abundance of 'baby' (<1mm) Riccia cavernosa plants growing along with young Bryum sp. There were many thousands of plants, this was in contrast to recent observations in some other scrapes on the reserve which supported mature plants, but in much smaller numbers.

Elsewhere vascular plant interest included a reasonably good number of Liparis in Hedgehog Slack in compartment 1, though none in scraped areas. One scrape in this slack did have the miniscule Chaffweed Centunculus minimus and Dave Carrington took me on a quick visit to Sker to see the Field Gentians Gentianella campestris. Good numbers of the Nationally Scarce scarab Onthophagus nuchicornis were among the beetles found in fresh cow pats there too. Kenfig really is such a great place.

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