Friday, 17 February 2017

Margam sidings

Also known as 'Kenfig marshalling yards', this area is now a stunning brown-field slack full of  goodies.
The 'railway fen' always seems to provide something new each time I visit and a small patch of Pseudocalliergon lycopodioides at SS7913483514 provided the highlight of yesterday's visit. Whilst Calliergonella cuspidata was largely dominant, there's also a lot of Drepanocladus polygamus and D. aduncus in the flooded areas along with a wide range of interesting vascular plants and charophytes; those noted yesterday included Chara virgata, Equisetum variegatum (a), Pyrola rotundifolia subsp. maritima (lf), Cladium mariscus (o-lf) Juncus acutus (lf), J. subnodulosus (la), and Scirpoides holoschoenus. Not too shabby for an area of abandoned industrial land!
L: P. lycopodioides, R: Location shown by plastic box
 L: Equisetum variegatum, R: Scirpoides holoschoenus
L: Chara virgata, R: Cladium mariscus
Leaves of P. lycopodioides, D. aduncus & D polygamus
The drier gravelly sidings also provided a little interest with some nice carpets of Amblystegium serpens var. salinum growing alongside species such as Rhynchostegium megapolitanum, Bryoerythrophyllum recurvirostrum and rather oddly Neckera complanata on open flat ground. A 'golden road' of Schistidium crasspilum was a fine spectacle as the sun started to break through.
 L: Neckera complanataR: Location shown by knife
 L: Schistidium crassipilum, R: Amblystegium serpens var. salinum
My route


  1. That looks a fascinating bit of habitat Barry. I love the photo of the golden road.

  2. Pseudocalliergon lycopodioides in NPT - result! - and you can add to the list, Epipactis palustris, Orchis morio, Dactylorhiza incarnata, Carex serotina and Carex pseudocyparus. It's one of the best brown field sites in South Wales and it offers a snapshot of what was there on a far bigger scale 100 years ago. A pity that it is facing oblivion in the form of Sea Buckthorn (right now) and development in a protection-less post-brexit future. RIP

  3. Not difficult to guess which way you voted then ;-)
    I'm not sure the S.Buck. will creep into this very wet area, but without management Phragmites/Cladium is likely to become ever more dominant.