Readers’ wildlife photos

August 2, 2022 • 8:00 am

Send in your photos, please. I need lots of contributions (I’m still amazed, though, that so many people are kind enough to oblige.)

Today’s photos are of plants and spiders from UK reader Jonathan Wallace. His captions are indented, and you can enlarge the photos by clicking on them:

You put out a call for more readers’ wildlife pictures so I thought I’d send some plant pictures (plus a couple of spider pictures).  In these pictures I was going for more of an impression of the plants in the landscape rather than botanical detail.  Most were taken within a few miles of my home in Newcastle upon Tyne, UK.  The exceptions are the floating leaves (in the moat of a schloss in eastern Germany) and the spider webs over the water (at a water mill near Giessen in Germany).


Floating leaves in a moat:

Rushes (Juncus sp.):

Seedheads of knapweed (Centaurea nigra) in a meadow:

Water crowfoot (Ranunculus sp) flowers in a marsh:

Rosebay willowherb, Chamerion angustifolium, seedheads:

Dew-covered orb-web (Araneidae) spider web:

Spider webs over a mill race.  These probably belong to the bridge spider Larinioides sclopetarius, which often builds webs on bridges and other human structures, especially near water.  Any insect flying along this water course would struggle to avoid the array of webs strung across the stream.

Typha latifolia seedheads.  This plant is known by a variety of vernacular names including bulrush, reedmace and cattails.  The seed-heads are initially like cannon ramrods but by spring they start to break up and the fluffy seeds are then dispersed by the wind:

9 thoughts on “Readers’ wildlife photos

  1. I detect a distinct allusion to literature, particularly poetry, with many of these plants … rushes, bulrushes… might be a good theme … plants in literature…

    Love the mood on this one ….

  2. Rosebay willow herb in the photo has gone to seed. It has a tiny pretty pink flower.
    In my childhood in London, it was known as Fireweed, partly because it grew freely on bomb sites (from WW2).. The leaves will also turn bright red if it too dry. It is one of the first of the larger plants to colonise an area newly exposed to the air.

  3. There is a bittersweet mood to these. The fact that many of the plants have gone to seed reminds me of summer’s end (for me, the saddest time of year).

    As mentioned above, the first one is beautiful. The water surface is so smooth that I had to pause over this one for a minute to understand what I was looking at.

  4. What lovely photos. I especially love that top one of the floating leaves in the moat.
    I almost thought the leaves were floating from the sky. It’s just a gorgeous photo.

  5. Thanks for sharing these great photos. Like many readers above, I especially loved the moat photo. I’d be proud of that one.

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