Posted by Graeme Lyons , Monday, 26 March 2012 20:59
The Reserves Team went a brief walk up Malling Down after a meeting today. We only had just over an hour but we certainly mopped up. I foolishly promised Pancalia schwarzella, Opatrum sabulosum and Alopecosa barbipes. Amazingly, we saw them all. A Red Kite was drifting around being mobbed by crows to boot. We then spotted a species new to me. Alopecosa cuneata (first photo). Both these Alopecosa species have modified front legs. In cuneata, they are black and swollen. In barbipes (below), they are black and hairy. I think these wolf spiders are really smart and it's nice to be able to identify a few spiders in the field. There is only one species in the genus I am yet to see but that is the big rare one and it seems it is only at a few sites.
We only saw one of the rare Pancalia schwarzella moths after searching through masses of Ancylis comptana. Opatrum sabulosum was the most abundant beetle. I end the day on 3824 species.