Edging the Back Pit, as the lake is known by the angling association that lease lake for fishing, was an array of brightly coloured flowers, but stood out against the rest was a royal-purple flowering creeping, perennial known as self-heal. Self-heal is a member of the mint family and is loved by bees, butterflies and other nectar feeding insects. The plants name tells you that it once was used in for its medicinal properties. Fresh leaves were used to heal boils, cuts and infected fingers. Tea made using this plant to treat coughs too.
The skipper butterfly was busy fluttering from one flower head to another as I knelt trying to photograph it. Another plant that’s loved by an array of insects is the narrow-leaved water-parsnip. This one has a nectar loving Longhorn beetle on it.
This longhorn beetle comes from a family of 60 different types in Britain. It’s thought others longhorns types have been introduced into the country in timber coming from aboard. They caused damaged by its larvae burrowing into wood which can take several years to mature. Most adult Longhorn have long, narrow bodies, with long legs and short powerful jaws that are directed downwards while the males have very long antennae. As adults, the longhorns feed on nectar.
The field between the front pit and houses on the left hand side of the photo above is now being built on as the government’s driving to build more houses in Britain. The edge of the field at the very top of the picture on the other side of Western Road has a large housing estate going up on it too. My friend, Ana and I will carry on walking the paths and recording what we see while we can.
Both of the lakes in the photo were created back in the early 1920’s when the gravel was extracted in the creation of the village itself. The front gravel pit covers 3 acre and was developed into an general fishery with rudd, roach, perch, crucian carp, tench and bream. The Back Lake has 5.5 acre of water and is a specimen fishery and most species are present with some of the roach and rudd being over 2lbs and tench and bream to over 9lbs in size. Check out this link to see a fish caught at one of the lakes.
The video is made up of short clips and still photos taken on a 79 minute walk on Friday 2nd July 2021.