Photos of the month: September
Martha Boalch, 09/10/2018
This month we received 839 records, 54 with a photo, from 181 recorders. This is more than last month when we had 734 records. You’ve sent us a mixture of records: autumn tint, leaves falling, fly agaric appearing, amount of fruit and the last glimpses of our summer visitors - swallows and house martins.
The joy of conkers is alive and well, “Surprised to see so many conkers just laid there - these used to get snapped up so quickly when I was at school! Pleased to be able to take some home to show my young daughter.” A recorder in Devon.
The emergence of the fly agaric is a sure sign that autumn has arrived. These bright jewels have captured the attention of many of you. However, no reports of caterpillars astride the mushroom smoking a pipe and giving directions to Alice…
These inconspicuous but beautiful flowers are an essential nectar source – at a time of year when other flowers are scarce - for a variety of insects before they go into hibernation.
Leaf tint and drop
As the green pigment breaks down to reveal the yellow or red display the tree is slowing down ready for winter. They lose their leaves to conserve energy. As the days shorten and the temperature cools, the leaves can no longer photosynthesise effectively. Keeping the leaves on the tree over winter would only cause water loss to the tree with very little gain from photosynthesis. The tree recovers what it can from the leaves before they drop.
These berries not only provide a splash of extra colour to complement the autumn leaves, they are also a great food source for birds, including the winter visitors of redwing and fieldfare.
It’s changeover time. The house martin and swallow are headed south for a warmer winter in Africa. Our winter visitors from Iceland, Scandinavia and Siberia are starting to arrive. So far we have one redwing and one fieldfare arrival record, but we look forward to more coming in.
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.