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Monday, 29 July 2013

Double tick day!! Staffs & Oxon 29/7/13

I set off from Peacehaven at midnight and after a 4 hour journey (plus 1hrs kip) I arrived in Cheshire where the Caspo had roosted the previous evening, but there was no sign, so I shot down to Rudyard Reservoir and thankfully found the CASPIAN TERN alongside some Black-headed Gulls.

A tad distant for the camera, it looked great through the scope and proved to be my 150th (?) Caspian Tern of 2013 after seeing loads in The Gambia, and some in France. Oh well, a good UK tick as they have proved to be pain to catch up with since I've been birding.

Afterwards I stopped of in the Chilterns to catch up with one of the rarest Orchids in the UK, the Slender/Narrow Lipped Helleborine. Another new one for me, I managed to find 4 plus plenty of Violet Helleborines with no flowers yet. The Narrow-lipped were difficult to photograph due to the light, but one was very robust and a real treat to see.

 Caspian Tern
 Rudyard Reservoir, Staffs
 the flowers are held rather pendulous all around the stem.
Size was similar to Broad-leaved Helleborine. (David Lang - Wild Orchids of Sussex)
 the plain, pale green perianth segments are long,
pointed and spreading. When using flash the paler
labellum can be seen. (David Lang - Wild Orchids of Sussex)
the pointed 'tongue' appearance on the labellum were
very distinctive. Though not obvious in the image, when
being viewed the labellum was obviously paler then
the perianth segments. (David Lang - Wild Orchids of Sussex)

Narrow-lipped Helleborine in The Chilterns

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