Nature Photography from Somerset and beyond
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Ringdown, Yarty Moor and More

Having recently moved house to a different part of the county I was pleased to discover that my route home from the office now takes me directly past Somerset Wildlife Trust reserve at Yarty Moor and it is an almost insignificant detour to visit another of their reserves at Ringdown.

Both reserves are typical of the blackdown hills in particular the springs and seepages associated with the geology of the area.

We started our visit exploring ringdown the reserve has a rich and diverse flora associated with the complex geology ranging from meadows with frequent orchids, bugle and luzula

meadow-ringdown

to mires with rare fungi such as Mitrula paludosa. This specimen is one of only 5 records of this species in the county and the first outside of Exmoor.

mitrula-paludosa-st17771547-11-05-12

another treat for us at ringdown was this sexton or burying beetle (Nicrophorus sp.) and the first time I have ever seen. this genus burys carcasses of small mammals and birds and one buried lays their eggs on the corpse.

sexton-beetle-nicrophorus-sp-ringdown

Yarty Moor is part of the wider Deadman SSSI and is one of the best examples of a mixed valley mire in the county. Full of bog pools and wet grassland. With species such as the round leaved sundew present.

roundleaved-sundew-yarty-moor

Overall these are 2 fantastic and somewhat hidden reserves that I am keen to return to to see interesting rarities such as Bogbean and Pale Butterwort when they come into flower.

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