Wednesday, 22 March 2017
Tuesday, 14 March 2017
Sunday, 12 March 2017
The anthers are divided into two sections, each one called a theca. To release the pollen they split from base to tip towards the centre of the flower. The splitting of the anthers is termed dehiscence and this type of splitting is called longitudinal dehiscence. Splitting on the side towards the centre of the flower is called extrorse dehiscence.
If the two bracts and several of the perianth segments are pulled back right down the perianth tube, the ovary is revealed. The stalk below the ovary is called the pedicel and this is the name given to the stalk of any individual flower.
- long thin leaves
- perianth segments all similar in two whorls of three
- three stamens
- style appearing single with three stigmas
Friday, 10 March 2017
- the veins of the leaf are parallel to one another and the leaves are long and thin
- the flower parts are in multiples of three
The snowdrop is placed with other genera in family Amaryllidaceae which share the following features
- perianth in two whorls of three rather similar segments, both coloured rather than green
- flowers containing both male and female parts
- ovary inferior / flower epigynous
- six stamens
- narrow leaves
Sunday, 30 October 2016
Friday, 28 October 2016
The image on the left shows the 6MP version and that on the right the 18MP one. It is much clearer on my computer of course as the image has lost resolution dropping it here. I can see the microscopic surface texture of the underside of the head and prosternum and the mentum (the structure between the base of the antennae) is much clearer including the tiny central tooth. I've placed two other photos of the beetle in my Bradycellus key online.
To the mystery of how it ended up in a kitchen storage box. The beetle keys to Bradycellus verbasci, a common species with over 1600 records on the National Biodiversity Network site including our grid square. My notes say that it is attracted to light so it must have come inside during the late summer and accidentally got stuck in the cupboard.
Monday, 9 May 2016
I have tried to find the mousetail (Myosurus minimus) on two occasions so far. Last year I tried a location near Hartley Wintney and couldn't find it. This year I tried a known site near Plastow Green but may have been too early.
On a walk with the grandchildren from North Warnborough to Odiham along the canal and back on a footpath across the fields we came across a water trough in the middle of an area of pasture which had been well trodden by cattle the previous autumn. I had walked through this field last summer and had considered it suitable habitat for the mousetail. I was delighted to find not one but hundreds of plants in an area about 15 metres by 15 metres. Although inconspicuous, once you got your eye in the grandchildren were well able to spot the plants.
|Myosurus minimus near North Warnborough|
My granddaughter also spotted a bug crossing the path which turned out to be the first time I'd seen a member of family Cydnidae. Identification to family is straightforward with the spines along the legs. I decided to produce a key for this family which is now published here https://sites.google.com/site/mikesinsectkeyshymenoptera/Home/hemiptera/key-to-the-british-species-of-family-cydnidae. The species was one of the commoner ones in the family, Legnotus limbosus, associated with bedstraws. The closest of these was in the nearby hedge.