A long weekend in Hellfire Corner! 20 - 22 October 2023

To celebrate Belinda's birthday we had a long weekend in east Kent, the area known as 'Hellfire Corner' in WW2! We stayed in a lovely little Airbnb in the village of Ringwould about 3 miles SW of Deal.

The weather was wet on Friday morning and all day Saturday but Friday afternoon and Sunday were bright and sunny. Regardless of the weather we got out and about to make the most of our time.

The highlight from a natural history point of view was a visit to an old friend Nigel Jarman in Kingsdown on Saturday afternoon as he'd offered to share the contents of his fridge with us - moths that is! He'd trapped a few goodies - Oak Rustic (of 2 colour forms), Pearly Underwing, Vestal, Gem, Satellite, Old World Webworm, Olive-tree Pearl, Brick and Scarce Bordered Straw - all of which I gratefully photographed. For me the star of the show however was a lovely Mottled Shieldbug he also had. This rare species was only discovered in the UK in 2010 and is still confined to parts of South London and Kent.

A few bits of botanical interest were seen during the weekend with Golden Samphire, Rock Samphire, Narrow-leaved Ragwort and Carline Thistle the best. 

Birds weren't much to write home about with a few Rock Pipits and Ravens at Dover and St Margaret's and a flock of Siskins over Kingsdown.

On Sunday morning quite a few Small Whites were on the wing along the clifftops but check as I did I couldn't find one of a southern persuasion!

                                                                                                                           Mottled Shieldbug

                                                                                                                                     Oak Rustics
                                                                                                                           Old World Webworm
                                                                                                                             Olive-tree Pearl
                                                                                                                                 Pearly Underwing
                                                                                                                          Golden Samphire
                                                                                                                              Rock Samphire
                                                                                                                            Carline Thistle
                                                                                                                                Small White

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