A Skye Day

The first ferry failed to raise its ramp properly so we all got put ashore back on Raasay.  Some two and a half hours later we got underway again.  A shortened day from what I had planned but I achieved most of what I had set out to do.

First I went to Lochan Doiragat to have another look for the 1988 record for cranberry.  It was recorded as V. microcarpum (Small Cranbery) but was probably V. oxycoccos (Cranberry).  However, I failed.  There are some bits of Sphagnum bog that would need boards to reach – perhaps another time!  Nearby is the known Skye site for Lycopodiella inundata (Marsh Clubmoss).  Numbers seemed down on 2007 but I spotted a second colony about 100m away which was good news.  There was also Carex pauciflora (Few-flowered Sedge) and C. lasiocarpa (Slender Sedge), neither new but both nice to see.

I then went to Armadale to collect a further fruiting specimen of Peltaria alliacaea (Garlic Cress) for RBGE.  Nearby was Salicornia sp.  (Glasswort), Aster tripolium (Sea Aster) and Suaeda maritima (Annual Sea-blite)

I checked a Prunus that I had spotted earlier in the year near Sabhal Mòr Ostaig. It is Prunus domestica (Wild Plum) but I am uncertain as to which subspecies (no fruit).

On the roadside in Sleat I spotted Agrostis gigantea (Black Bent), the first vice-county record since before 2000.

After that it was off to Ardnish near Broadford to look for Dactylorhiza viridis (Frog Orchid) for the Threatened Plants Project.  I found 21. Here is the first:

Frog Orchid on Skye

Frog Orchid on Skye

There were many other orchids – both Butterfly Orchids, Common Spotted and Northern Marsh in profusion and a few Early Marsh.

As I was leaving the area I spotted the hybrid between Dactylorhiza fuchsii (Common Spotted-orchid) and D. maculata (Heath Spotted-orchid) and escaped Polemonium caeruleum (Jacob’s-ladder).

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