Rigg and Digg

On Wednesday I visited the Trotternish peninsula of Skye, going first to Rigg where I re-found a previous record for Equisetum hyemale (Rough Horsetail or Dutch Rush):

Equisetum hyemale on Skye

Equisetum hyemale on Skye

Then further north to Digg to look for Hippuris vulgaris (Mare’s-tail).  This I found where my predecessor as vice-county recorder had previously reported it but there was no sign in three locations reported by the NCC Loch Survey in 1989.  There has always been a bit of doubt about some of the records from that survey.  In this case one of the lochans has clearly changed in character, now being a swamp with no open water.  A second is heading that way but the third is clear.

Hippuris on Skye

Hippuris on Skye

The lochan with the Hippuris also contained, Lemna minor (Duckweed), Potamogeton berchtoldii (Small Pondweed) and Sparganium erectum (Branched Bur-reed), all uncommon in the vice-county.

During a quick walk along the lower reaches of the River Brogaig I noted Berula erecta (Lesser Water-parsnip) which is known from much farther upstream but is a rare plant in this part of the world, plus large numbers of willows: Salix phylicifolia  (Tea-leaved Willow), Salix viminalis (Osier) and a single specimen of Salix fragilis (Crack Willow) for which there are very few records.

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