Saturday, 14 October 2017

St James Park London and Environment Issues Network

St James Park - home of geese, algae lichens and more..

On 10 October I went to London (via Giggleswick and Lancaster train) for the Environmental Issues Network meeting of Churches Together in Britain and Ireland, which was held at Church House, Westminster.

Arriving 1 hour early, I asked the doorman for a suggestion of where to go for an hour.. He said "Go and see the Queens Swans in St James Park".

So ignoring Westminster Abbey and Methodist Central Hall and the Houses of Parliament, I trotted off to St James Park - which was indeed only 5 minutes away. I passed troupes of Japanese tourists - their guides holding a post high with a flag on it (reminded me of Venice many years ago)

It was a much more relaxing and refreshing way of spending 40 minutes than "doing historic buildings".

Greylag geese

 Assorted ducks. 
And graceful grey squirrels. - how wonderfully they unfold their tails
It was great to see them all so close up. Sadly (or maybe fortunately) I had left my sandwiches at Church House - but even  to opening my bag on the ground  pretending  to get food would draw some of the animals.

I looked at the trunks of several trees  - nearly all London Plane, and also a Lime tree

I found Phaeophyscia orbicularis (the grey one below - it has rhizine underneath, so is held slightly away fro the bark.) , Hyperphyscia adglutinata (the greener one - firmly stuck to the tree) a tiny bit of Xanthoria parietina, and lots of alga

The Phaeophyscia is very common over most of UK, but the Hyperphyscia (form this map below from the NBN Altas) Is more of a southern species but is working its way north.

 Hyperphyscia adglutinata from the NBN Atlas

Books say that both species grow where there is a lot of dust. 

I did not find Lecanora conizoides .

 Paper on Lichen and bryophyte distribution on oak in London in relation to air pollution and bark acidity

More links: lichen-lins1

There were good views from the bridge:-

Towards Buckingham Palace

A Greylag Goose

Ladybird Larva

Horse guards parade

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