Up at 5.30am for the fourth breeding bird transect at Thorpe Wood, which was a joy, thanks to the glorious spring sunshine. The leaves are emerging rapidly, and it's getting harder to see the birds - it was also hard not to be distracted by the dazzling display of bluebells and other spring flowers. Nevertheless, we ended up with a fairly good list, the most surprising sighting being a little egret circling over the wood!
After a quick breakfast Pete and I headed off into Lincolnshire. We ended up recording in three separate localities, over about seven and a half hours. The morning was spent at Ingoldsby Wood, a Forestry Commission site which retains an excellent woodland flora including sweeps of bluebells and some very strong colonies of Early Purple-orchids. But the highlight was finding a colony of Herb-paris, a rather local species confined to ancient woodlands, and which hadn't previously been known from the wood. I just love this plant - such an unusual and understated flower. This one is rather odd, as normally the floral parts are in fours, but in this fine specimen they are in fives.
The only trouble with being a field botanist and photographer is the amount of work it generates when you get back! I managed to get most of my records entered in the evening - amazingly we'd recorded over 325 plant species on our trip. Not bad for a fairly ordinary part of the world!