South of Sleaford.
All day Bioblitz event with evening moth/bat recording session.
Joint meeting with Friends of Mareham Pastures.

Meeting times: 10am, 1pm and 8.15pm at reserve car park at TF 072447 (NG34 8ST). Follow Mareham Lane south out of Sleaford and turn right towards recycling centre then turn right again into car park.

NB. No mains available for moth traps. Nearest public toilets in Sleaford town centre.

Habitats: Meadows and woodland over restored landfill site.

Leader: Brian Hedley ☎ 07989 665794 ✉

Results:   A BioBlitz event jointly arranged by the LNU and Friends of Mareham Pastures and led by Brian Hedley and Linda Lowndes. Access and assistance courtesy of Lincolnshire County Council, particularly Matthew Davey.  A day long recording event with bird-ringing and an evening moth trapping session and also a bat walk led by Annette Faulkner.  About 40 people came along to the daytime session (including members of the two organisations above plus other members of the local community). About 30 people attended the evening moth/bat recording session (with some overlap of people but around 60 in total for whole event).

Over 160 plant species were noted with many planted or seeded.

Forty bird species were recorded including many trapped during bird-ringing sessions such as bullfinch and blackcap.  Feeding common pipistrelle bats were noted during the evening walk.

Invertebrate-wise, the highlight was the discovery of potential new species for the county in the form of the small weevil Zacladus exiguous. This was found by Charlie Barnes and is known to feed on black knapweed which was scattered around the site. An impressive 16 species of butterflies were noted by the attendees including many holly blues and also Essex skipper. Thirty-four moth species were noted during daytime and evening moth trapping session and included brimstone, magpie, straw underwing and abundant straw dots.  Six sheildbug species included hairy, bishop’s mitre, parent and birch. Other invertebrates included box bug, many Roesel’s bush-crickets, tree damselbug and southern hawker.  Galls on various plants (especially oak) were frequent and included Artichoke Gall caused by the gall wasp Andricus foecundatrix.