Lynchcombe Update

Hawthorn Blossom - Lynchcombe, Mendip Hills, Somerset, UK. IMG_9013

Hawthorn Blossom – Lynchcombe, Mendip Hills, Somerset, UK. IMG_9013

Lynchcombe Nature Reserve

Middle of May is probably my favourite time of year.  The spring flowers are out and summer is just over the horizon.  At Lynchcombe, following Blackthorn, the Hawthorn trees are out in bloom.

Spring Grassland - Lynchcombe, Somerset, UK. ID IMG_9066

Spring Grassland – Lynchcombe, Somerset, UK. ID IMG_9066

We have had some rain and the grass is very, very long – lush.

Spring Grassland - Lynchcombe, Somerset, UK. ID IMG_9070

Spring Grassland – Lynchcombe, Somerset, UK. ID IMG_9070

The common blue butterflies are already out and about.  A good sign as some years I do not see any.  I’m sure they are there – just not enough to spot.

Common Blue (Polyommatus icarus) - Lynchcombe, Somerset, UK. ID IMG_9091

Common Blue (Polyommatus icarus) – Lynchcombe, Somerset, UK. ID IMG_9091

Bracken has been encroaching over the reserve for years.  Somerset Wildlife Trust are busy cutting it back but its an endless task.

Under the bracken - Lynchcombe, Somerset, UK. ID IMG_9178

Under the bracken – Lynchcombe, Somerset, UK. ID IMG_9178

However, protected by the crunchy dead bracken from last year their is a rich understory of flowers between the slender fronds.  Of course, where the flowers grow the insects follow such as the tiny brown argus below.

Brown Argus (Aricia agestis) - Lynchcombe, Somerset, UK. ID IMG_9107

Brown Argus (Aricia agestis) – Lynchcombe, Somerset, UK. ID IMG_9107

Hawthorn

It’s widespread across the reserve, and all over Mendip Hills.  It is so beautiful.

Hawthorn Blossom - Lynchcombe, Somerset, UK. ID IMG_9204

Hawthorn Blossom – Lynchcombe, Somerset, UK. ID IMG_9204

Lynchcombe has a secret dark corner.  Water flows into a sink hole only to reappear at the bottom of the Mendip Hills.  Surrounding the hole are trees and ferns.  The area is dark and damp – expect to see a dinosaur (perhaps a small one) at any moment.

Swallet Ferns - Lynchcombe, Somerset, UK. ID IMG_9200

Swallet Ferns – Lynchcombe, Somerset, UK. ID IMG_9200

And Finally…

The reserve has a small collection of bluebells most growing out in the open grassland of the combe.  They manage to avoid trampling by sheep.  Being too toxic for the sheep to eat I assume they just leave the area alone.

One of the last bluebells - Lynchcombe, Somerset, UK. IMG_9028

One of the last bluebells – Lynchcombe, Somerset, UK. IMG_9028

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