Wednesday, 28 March 2018

The Gloucestershire Bryophyte group at Llangattock

The Glos bryology group arranged an out-of-county day at the eastern end of Llangattock this year, to give us a bit of a change from the usual neutral / calcareous woodlands and grasslands of our own county. 7 of us turned up at the quarry car park on a chilly Sunday morning in March, to explore the conical spoil heaps, fallen boulders and quarry walls of the area. We didn’t get very far (as usual!), but still managed to record 97 species for the square SO2015.

Highlights of the day were Racomitrium canescens on the grassland at SO20241554, and Bryum elegans on a fallen boulder at the base of the quarry (SO20491535). Both are new species for VC 42.

Racomitrium canescens

Bryum elegans in situ

Bryum elegans: Note reflexed hair-points and border of long narrow cells

We spotted some lovely patches of Sanionia uncinata sheltered within the walls of an old building and scattered throughout the grass on the spoil heaps above.

The Climacium dendroides was looking particularly photogenic and I just couldn’t resist...

We saw Philonotis calcarea, new to many of us, and Sharon Pilkington unintentionally collected Philonotis arnelli in amongst another specimen. Sharon also spotted Distichium inclinatum on the outside wall of the derelict building – there were old capsules which were clearly inclined, and new ones coming which I will go back and photograph if I get a chance.

Further to the west, David Hawkins found Calliergon cordifolium in shallow pools on the quarry bottom, but sadly the inevitable rain arrived about then, so we have no photos.

Finally, not to forget the liverworts, some beautiful Ptilidium ciliare on rocks amongst the grassland to the west of the spoil heaps:

And Tritomaria quinquedentata on the spoil heaps amongst the grass and other bryophytes:

All in all, we had a fantastic day and are planning a return trip soon for those who couldn’t make the first visit.


  1. It is an amazing site which I don't visit often enough. Bryum elegans is a really nice record.

  2. Some really nice records and the Bryum looks distinctive enough that I may be able to spot some myself one day! I'll have to check the species list for Mynydd Llangattock to see if any other of your records are new to the site.

  3. Claire, I was wondering if the Racomitrium might be Breutelia? Certainly looks very different to Rac.can. I've seen in Glamorgan. Maybe just a mislabelled image?