Is this the only place in the UK you could take this photo?

Posted by Graeme Lyons , Sunday, 29 October 2017 19:57

Pevensey Marshes SWT reserve is an amazing place. Just one dip in the water with the net and all sorts of things can be found. So much so that it took me and Evan Jones all day to cover four ditches last week. I'll be going back to finish the survey tomorrow. The first ditch was FULL of Water Spiders and Fen Raft Spiders Dolomedes plantarius but this photo shows a Lesser Water-measurer Hydrometra gracilenta sitting on a Fen Raft Spider. I don't think the two occur together anywhere else in the UK.

And this nationally scarce wolf spider is the beefy Pirata piscatorius. It's like a Pirata went out on Halloween dressed as a Dolomedes and people do mistake them, mainly due to the relative bulk and the white stripes on the side of the cephalothorax. Note however that even this image has been photo-bombed by another Dolomedes showing it how it's done, those legs are huge! We only saw three P. piscatorius on this survey, all in the same ditch, the only ditch I have seen it in on site. It's not normally the sort of thing that would be recorded during an aquatic invertebrate survey but I will add it on to this survey. Outside of Pevensey it's only been recorded in West Sussex once at Burton Pond in its more typical habitat of a Sphagnum-rich bog. 

The molluscs and beetles are great out there too but I didn't have a lot of time for taking photos. I couldn't resist this one of a lovely Pike being photo-bombed by Notonecta glauca.

Vertebrates were pretty good too with only my second ever Brown Hare on a Trust reserve (my last one was over eight years ago at the Mens would you believe it), a Wheatear and a Golden Plover over. What will tomorrow bring?!

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