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Monday, 4 May 2015

Spring surprise

Wall butterfly sunning

We took advantage of the forecast of good weather on this May Day Bank Holiday to walk our Cornish cliffs from Stanbury to Sharpnose Point. And what a good decision it was. The range of spring species was both surprising and rewarding.

Sea Campion, Thrift,
Kidney Vetch and Gorse,
Our first reward was to see our first Wall butterflies of the year, followed by mass flowering of Early Purple Orchids, always a confirmation that spring has really arrived. Swallows were planing over the cliff tops with the song of Whitethroats close at hand – again the first of the year and an abundance of coastal spring flowers – Thrift, Kidney Vetch, Sea Campion, Violets and Bird's foot Trefoil.

Stonechats, Linnets and Skylarks were about and I found our first local Gorse Shield Bugs on the abundantly flowering Gorse. Another first of the year was a Small Copper and Spring Squill.

Gorse Shield Bugs in spring colous

The sighting of the morning must go to a mammal though.

We are used to our Long-haired Jack Russell bitch pouncing on grass verges as she images she has found some creature. So, we let her snuffle and root about in the springy cliff-top grass unconcernedly. Until, that is, she flushed out a fox cub. No bigger than a kitten, it fell over its own feet before disappearing into a well used run that vanished into a mass of bramble and gorse.
Spring Squill and
 attendant invertebrates

A pity it was quicker than me and my camera, so no picture this time.


  1. What a lovely walk. We moved to Bude last year and have been slowly exploring the local coastline. We haven't fit any further North than Duckpool yet; looks like we really should!

  2. Emma

    Thanks for those kind words - Morwenstow is spectacular.


Let me know what you do like and what you would like to see.