Twelve people came to the second ‘Bexley Wildlife Social on October 14th, whilst another half dozen found themselves unable to attend at the last moment for various reasons.
We heard from Martin Watts and Linda Graham about the management of the Ruxley Gravel Pits SSSI, from which flowed a debate about control of invasive aliens and the need for biosecurity measures – difficult when you have fishing people going in and out. The rate at which Buddleia and Willows regrow was flagged up, emphasising the need for more volunteer assistance.
Kim Ilsley talked about conservation work in Lesnes Abbey woods, with photos of wildflowers and fungi. Richard Spink made an interesting contribution about the response of the woodland ground flora to the 1987 storm, which had had a similar effect to coppicing in opening up areas to light. This raised issues about the apparent loss of biological records from the time, which pre-dated all the modern digital systems for storing and sharing data more widely.
Chris Rose presented information about the ups and downs of various Butterfly, Dragonfly and Damselfly species in the Borough, gathered by himself and several other observers. One butterfly species has become extinct in our area, but others have spread or been found at more sites, and there are a number of Odonata which may colonise Bexley in the near future to add to two other quite recent arrivals.
This presentation can be downloaded here:
There was a discussion about the advertising of events, which again highlighted the need to avoid total reliance on the internet, and to get information into the local press and put up posters in nearby shop windows etc. It was pointed out that a lot of local wildlife walks have been held on weekdays, which precludes some people from attending.
If readers have particular wildlife subjects they would like to hear a short talk about – or would like to talk about themselves – at future social events, please let us know.