The winter rainfall of 2013-2014

The winter of 2013-2014 was wet! For the first thirteen days of December only 2mm of rain was recorded in my raingauge in Summersdale,  from then until the 5th March there were only six dry days. (A 'dry day' being one with less than 0.2mm (1/100 inch) of rain.)

The monthly amounts of rain are shown in the following table:

Month Amount
mm inches % Bognor
December 189 7.3 237
January 199 7.8 258
February 152 6 272

(Bognor is used as a comparison as it has an official Met Office station which has been on the same site for about a century.)

The total three month rainfall was 538 mm (21 inches) equivalent to 254% of the long-term Bognor average.

November is, on average, the wettest month, but in 2013 the Chichester rainfall was only 80 mm; 92% of the Bognor average.

The December and January rainfall figures (186 and 199 mm) for Chichester were considerably higher than the maxima ever recorded for those months in Bognor: 172mm (December 1959), 125 mm (January 1965). The February maximum was similar to Bognor's: 152 mm (February 1951.)

Brian Hopkins

Fungi Species found on October 17th 2015 Houghton Forest

List provided by Sarah Shepley

Antrodia albida, This was one of the cream coloured, resupinate fungi on dead wood.
Armillaria gallica Bulbous Honey Fungus
Armillaria mellea Honey Fungus
Bjerkandera adusta Grey Bracket
Claviceps purpurea Ergot
Clitocybe nebularis Clouded Funnel
Coprinellus impatiens the very delicate inkcap found at the beginning of the foray
Craterellus cornucopioides Horn of plenty
Crepidotus molle Peeling Oysterling
Daedaleopsis confragosa Blushing Bracket
Ganoderma australe Souther Bracket
Hebeloma mesophaeum Veiled Poison Pie
Hebeloma sinapizans Bitter Poison Pie    
Hygrophorus eburneus Ivory Woodwax
Hypholoma fasciculare Sulpher Tuft
Inocybe geophylla var. lilacina White fibrecap (lilac version)
Laccaria amethystina The Amethyst Deceiver
Laccaria laccata The Deceiver
Lactarius blennius Beech Milkcap
Leucoagaricus bahhamii Blushing Dapperling
Lycoperdon molle Soft Puffball
Lycoperdon pyriforme Stump Puffball
Mycena arcangeliana Angel's bonnet
Mycena galericulata Common bonnet
Mycena polygramma Grooved Bonnet
Mycena pura Lilac Bonnet
Oudemansiella mucida Porcelain Fungus
Peziza micropus, the small brown cup fungus found on rotten wood
Phellinus ferruginosus Rusy Porecrust
Phlebia tremollosa Jelly rot
Piptoporus betulinus Birch bracket/ razor strop
Rhodocollybia butyracea Butter Cap
Rhytisma acerinum Tar Spot
Russula nobilis Beech Sickener
Schizopora paradoza Split Porcrust
Skeletocutis nivea Hazel Bracket
Stemonitis fusca This was the white slime mould that looked like white raspberries. What we saw was the plasmodium stage which is the stage when the organism actually moves and hunts bacteria
Stereum hirsutum Hairy Curtain Crust
Trametes gibbosa Lumpy Bracket
Trametes versicolor Turkey Tail
Tricholoma cingulatum Girdled Knight
Tricholoma saponaceum Sopay Knight
Tricholoma scalpturatum Yellowing Knight
Tricholoma sulphureum Sulpher Knight
Xerula radicata Rooting Shank
Xylaria hypoxylon Candle Snuff

Stag beetles in Chichester 2012

In a year of consistently poor wet weather when many insects suffered, Chichester's stag beetles did surprisingly well with a total of 70 bettles being recorded. As an insect that spends all its 4-5 year long larval stage in or around rotting wood, especially wood underground, it might have been expected to be particularly susceptible to heavy rain and flooding - which we saw enough of last year! Yet the numbers of beetles recorded was higher than in most years;

1998 24 beetles recorded
1999 22
2000 36
2001 33
2002 76
2003 28
2004 49
2005 31
2006 77
2008 35
2009 39
2010 80
2011 127
2012 70

These figures also hint at a 4-5 year cycle which could match the time spent in the larval stage.

Of the 70 beetles recorded in 2012, 25 were males, 43 were females and the sex of 2 beetles in flight was not determined. This was not surprising as in almost all years more females were recorded than males - a trifle surprising since the male with its 'antlers' is the most striking of the two sexes.

If the 5 female beetles found still inside a rotting log on the 21st April are ignored, the first adult beetle recorded was a male on the 22nd May with the last male being found on 22nd July. The female flight period was 31st May to 18th August - once again female beetles were around longer than the males. This could reflect the fact that fertilised females may be around longer looking for suitable sites to lay their eggs.

Many thanks to all members who recorded stag beetles. 

Mike Perry.

Chichester, West Sussex

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