Saturday, 18 February 2017

Upper Ogwr

This inviting gully, which is accessed from the hairpin bend on the A4061 near Craig Ogwr, has been on our list for some time. So late yesterday afternoon H and I climbed up along the stream towards the sandstone outcrop. The wet gully rocks had lots of Hyocomium armoricum and Racomitrium aciculare and small amounts of Marsupella emarginata while Andreaea rothii ssp. falcataRacomitrium fasciculare and R. lanuginosa were on dry, exposed boulders and scree. Small patches of Bartramia pomiformis,  Gymnostomum aeruginosum and Saccogyna viticulosus occurred with typical mounds of Amphidium mougeotii on the outcrop, which was otherwise a bit disappointing. I have often looked for Tritomaria quinquedentata in Glamorgan in places like this, and especially at Craig y Llyn where Roy recorded it in the 1970s, without any success. Yesterday, I thought we had found it on the rocks at the top of the gully below the waterfall. Alas, I was blinded by expectation; it was Barbilophozia floerkei (Common Pawwort), which is found in similar places elsewhere in Glamorgan and is not unexpected in upper Ogwr. Nevertheless this subarctic-alpine liverwort is not common in south Wales until you get to the north-western parts of Breconshire and its occurrence in this gully adds a nice dot to its current VC41 distribution map.

 Barbilophozia floerkii, Hairpin Bend Gully

Interestingly, Tony Smith recorded  B. barbata on nearby Craig Ogwr over 50 years ago (NB specimens from the gully had well developed cilia at base of leaves).

Cilia at base of Barbilophozia floerkei leaf

Barbilophozia floerkei underleaf

The new total for this tetrad (SS99H) is 90. There's plenty more to explore.

View of Upper Ogwr the from top of Hairpin Bend Gully

1 comment:

  1. With just 4 other Glamorgan tetrads this species is anything but common, though I'm sure we'll improve on that in good time. Definitely a site worthy of further investigation.