Lichens on Poplar

poplar bark

Bracket fungus on willow
Bracket fungus on willow

These lichens, yellow Xanthoria parietina and pale  Parmelia saxatalis, were growing on a poplar at Alverthorpe Meadows which we walked around with friends Roger and Sue recently.

In a nearby tree was a mystery bird. It was the size of a song thrush but had the streaky spots of a mistle thrush. On a dull day looking up at it silhouetted amongst the bare branches I couldn’t get much further with an ID but luckily normal redwingRoger had brought his bridge camera with a powerful telephoto and when we viewed the bird on screen when we got back we could see clearly that it was a redwing. It’s unusual to see just the one redwing on its own, so I think that threw us.

white blossommagpie's nest

The pied plumage of the magpie in blends well with the bare branches.
The pied plumage of the magpie in blends well with the bare branches.

But the trees won’t be bare for much longer. It’s good to see the blossom (not sure what species this is) appearing. But whatever time of year there’s always something to see, even if it’s just the bracket fungus on a willow or the magpies busy repairing their nests.

Bracket fungus
Blushing bracket fungus Daedaleopsis confragosa on willow

We met one of the Wakefield countryside rangers who told us she was planning the annual toad-count. She realises toadthat it’s important to choose the right night for it – mild and damp – or you won’t get a good impression of the numbers.

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