20th May 2014
Dungeness, Kent, England
A morning spent at Dungeness was not terribly exciting birdwise (to put it mildly!). A confiding, singing Reed Bunting did, however, take pity on me and kept me from dying of terminal boredom!
The only other birds that came close to being in photographic range were a rather scruffy juvenile Blackbird with a mud-caked bill and a fly-by 2nd summer Great Black-blacked Gull...
Four-spotted Chasers are one of the earliest dragonflies to emerge each year, and true to form there were several basking in the weak, hazy sun trying in vain to get enough heat into their bodies for sustained flight.
With nothing else to hold my attention, I again turned my attention to the spring flowers growing in the shingle banks and rough grasslands of the reserve.
Slender Thistle (Carduus tenuiflorus)
Musk Thistle (Carduus nutans)
Slender thistle is a rather unobtrusive, small thistle and has a mostly coastal distribution in Britain, while the much more robust Musk Thistle, with its large flowers measuring up to 6cm across, is common in rough grasslands throughout most of England and eastern Wales.
Pink Sorrel is a native of South America that was introduced to Britain as a garden plant in the latter half of the 19th century and escaped to the wild only 40 years later. It is now found throughout most of southern England, usually close to human habitation.
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