Sunday, 26 July 2015

Botanising on Shetland 1: Shetland Mouse-ear

Good to hear from BSBI President Ian Denholm who has flown up to the northernmost limit of BSBI's geographical range in pursuit of wild flowers. Ian says:

Shetland Mouse-ear
Image: I. Denholm
"A BSBI team led by Scottish Officer JimMcIntosh and Paul Harvey from the Shetland Biological Records Centre has assembled on Unst, the northernmost of the Shetland Islands, for a week of plant recording. 

"While awaiting the arrival of others, a small group visited the spectacular bare serpentine rock at the Keen of Hamar Nature Reserve in search of rare plants including the Shetland Mouse-ear, aka Edmonston's Chickweed Cerastium nigrescens var. nigrescens, known from nowhere else in the world (an endemic).

"This proved to be in good quantity and in perfect flower. Over the week, the team, which also includes our Hon Gen Sec and Eyebright guru Chris Metherell, and two other trustees – Lynne Farrell and Mick Crawley – will be recording at selected locations on Unst and its neighbouring island, Fetlar".

Thanks Ian! You can see the single red dot on this distribution map which shows where the plant is recorded but you will have to zoom in and up. It really is in only one square and nowhere else in the world! 

Interpretation panel on Unst
Image: I. Denholm