BUTTERCUP BUTTERCUP

As children we used to pick a buttercup and hold it under each others chins to see if we liked butter, if a yellow glow appeared then it was said that you were indeed fond of butter. In reality every chin the little flowers were thrust under glowed yellow as the intense yellow of the pigments shine bright to attract insects which home in on the little yellow beacons and aid their pollination.

BUTTERCUP

Buttercups are a member of the Ranunculus family. The bright yellow colour of a buttercup comes from the yellow pigments that are in the surface layer of the petals. The shiny, glossy look is caused by layers of air just beneath the surface which reflect the sunlight like a mirror.

May is a good time of year to find large quantities of these bright little flowers as it grows well when the sun is high and warm. On colder days the flowers can turn to follow the sun with the flowers being dish shape to collect energy from the sun which warms up the flower which in turn helps to attract more insects. The dish shape also focuses the light to the centre of the flower to help with the ripening of its pollen.

One of the fields i walked through today was carpeted in these gorgeous little flowers and i thought it only fitting that i did a little research and give them a dedicated page. Having looked into these plants online the fact about them facing the sun to gain warmth from the sunlight made me think to the positioning of the flowers i walked through, and they were all in parts of the field that had sunlight for best part of, if not all of, the day.

MYSTERY SPONGES

So a couple of months back we had a series of exceptionally low tides in the UK which resulted in the low water tidelines being further out than usual. On one of these tides i happened to be walking the dogs along my local tidal river and as i had my usual walk along the water line i spotted somethings i hand,t seen before. Just above the current tideline and below the normal one there were some curious orangey sponge like objects attached to the rocks.

I,ve not seen anything like this around the Essex coastline before, but i do remember seeing similar in rock pools when i was holidaying in Devon and Cornwall many moons ago when i was a kid. I have tried contacting a couple of Oceanic Institutes but have not had any replies. They were firm to the touch and quite abundunt attaching themselves to the scattered rocks which litter the shoreline.

I,ve done a little vlog about them so feel free to have a look as the video shows them a lot better than just the above four pictures.

Hi, Its me….

Sooo, where do i begin???

I,ve been thinking about starting this blog for quiet a few years now but up until recently haven,t really been too sure as to whether anyone would actually be interested in reading, and hopefully watching, what i have to say and show. I know theres a good few blogs/sites on the internet being written by some real experts in wildlife and all things countryside related which show us so much about the wonder of our tiny isle, but i feel that i can add to the interest/information that these chaps and chappeses are already showing us. But then again i could be talking a load of cobblers, i guess we will find out over the coming months, i will try my best to post articles of interest.

Well  a little about myself is in order i suppose. My names Bryan, i,m in my mid forties and currently live just outside sunny ‘Sarfend’ on sea in good old Essex. I love my fishing, wildlife photography and taking my two dogs, Paddy the Sprocker Spaniel and Choccie the Cocker Spaniel, for nice long quite peaceful walks around my local area. I,m never happier than when sitting in the middle of nowhere listening to the sounds of nature.

ME

PADDY

CHOCCIE

I,ve been interested in nature and the countryside since i was a kid and was never happier back then than when i was raging through the local fields, climbing trees and getting chased by cows.

Not a lot has changed in all those years really, i still get chased by cows now and again, and i still love to be outdoors away from the noise and ‘busyness’ that modern life seems to have evolved into. Living where i do might seem like i,m miles away from what i enjoy, the Great Outdoors as they say,  but let me tell you that if you know where to look theres a lot of wildlife right round the corner and thats one of the things that has spurred me on to start this blog type thingy. When most people think of our great countryside, its beauty and the plants and creatures that live there, they generally think of the well known popularised places regularly seen on television and written about in countless books and magazines. The rugged Cornish coastline, the hills and mountains of the Lake District, The moorlands of Scotland, i could go on but you get the picture. No one thinks of the wildfowl packed estuaries of Southern Essex, or the peaceful fields of Mid Essex, theres just so much to see here and thats what i,d like to share with you all. I love finding new tucked away wildlife havens hidden between the busy towns and roads of Essex, and i,ll be visiting them when and wherever i can and posting them up here.

I hope you will enjoy reading about, watching the videos, and looking at the pictures i take along the way, i know i will enjoy it all anyway…….