Photos of the month: October

Martha Boalch, 09/11/2018

This month we received 552 records, 22 with a photo, from 124 recorders. This is less than last month when we had 839 records. You’ve sent us a mixture of records: autumn tint, leaves falling, fly agaric appearing, amount of fruit and the arrival of winter visitors.

Fly agaric

The majority of fly agaric records have already come in, just a few cheeky late-comers trickling in now. They were our species of the month in September, and you can find out more about them in my blog.

Fly agaric, Rachel Wood. Fly agaric is a fungus. The mushrooms our supporters record are fruiting bodies which distribute spores enabling the reproduction of the fungus.


The last few first ripe fruit records have come through. Amount of fruit scores are also still coming in. Beech fruit score had been quite high this year, 3.87, compared to the benchmark year of 2001, 2.33. Beech is the nation’s second favourite tree – find out more about it in my blog.

beech nut

Beech nut, Andy Willis. Beech nuts have been used as food for pigs, poultry and deer, but should never be fed to horses.

holly berries

Holly berries, Susan Spear. Holly has also had a fairly good crop of fruit 3.48 in 2018, 3.34 in 2001.

Leaf tint and drop

Across all species across the UK leaf tint looks like it might be a couple of days early this year. This may have been influenced by drought conditions in some parts of the UK.

hawthorn leaf

Hawthorn, first tint, Mary Kerby. From a preliminary look at the data first autumn tint of hawthorn looks to be a week early this year compared with 2007.

pedunculate oak

Pedunculate oak, first tint, Mary Kerby. Pedunculate oak first tint is similar to the 2007 benchmark.

Find out more about autumn leaves in Helen’s blog.

Beech, full tint, The Affinity Trust. In Celtic times, the leaves of beech were used medicinally to relieve swellings. The leaves were boiled to make a poultice.

oak tree

Oak tint, Marcia Blackman. Oak forests provide a habitat rich in biodiversity supporting more life forms than any other native UK trees.

Migratory birds

Our winter visitors from Iceland, Scandinavia and Siberia have been arriving. Your records have been flying in. So far we have received 64 fieldfare first seen records.

Redwing, Chris Buckingham. 56 records of first seen redwing so far this year.

You can find out all about redwings in my recent blog.

Keep recording

Our database of your phenology records is a powerful early warning tool, which helps us understand which species are struggling with climate change, and which ones are adapting.

Thank you for continuing to record on Nature’s Calendar. Tell your friends and family about us so we get an even better understanding of the impacts of climate change.  

Join thousands of other people and let us know what's happening to wildlife near you.

Join thousands of other people and let us know what's happening to wildlife near you.

Have you seen your first butterfly or swallow of the spring? Is it a good year for wild autumn fruits? Take part in Nature's Calendar and help scientists to monitor the effects of climate change on wildlife.

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