Aquatic Macrophytes course with CAN (Cheshire Active Naturalists)

My second course with CAN since joining (the first being Great Crested Newt training) began with a walk to Fleur’s house. Fleur is my ecology friend who like me is attempting to change career into the field of ecology and so attends courses and volunteers in her spare time. We met volunteering at Summerseat Nature Reserve and have since (along with our little group’s third member, Tom, who is doing the same degree as me but today was off in Preston doing the FSC course ‘Using a Flora’) attended many conservationy type things across the north west.

I arrived at Fleur’s to find her looking terrible. Up all night puking apparently but luckily (for me) still prepared to give the day a try.

The course was held at Rocksavage Power Station in Runcorn. I’d been there before for GCN training with CAN but that was on a cold April day. Today was hot.

Rocksavage Power Station

We signed in at the gate and joined the others in the meeting room. We were late and samples of rushes were already being handed out by Jack and Andy, the course leaders today.

They made a good team. Jack is your classic old school botanist with pockets in his jacket big enough to fit Stace in, he describes purely in Latin names and talks in an engaging absent minded fashion. Andy comes equipped with memorable anecdotes to commit Latin and common names to memory, sometime obscure but they do work!

Cheshire Active Naturalists (CAN)

The day was split between the meeting room and the ponds outside. There were around 20 people on the course including Becky from work and a man who told me that in 1976 someone accidentally threw a petrol bomb at him.

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Reed Canary Grass & Reed Sweet Grass

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Celery leaves speedwell

Brooklime speedwell

Marsh Horsetail. "The skirt is longer than the knickers".

Common starwort

New Zealand pygmy weed

It was really hot. Apparently my head went red where my hair is thinning at the back. I managed not to let on that I hadn’t realised my hair was thinning at the back. I’d better not be getting Dad’s bald patch.

Natins, floats, angle on stem
Polygonus
Marsh spearwort
Marsh bedstraw
Cyprus sedge
Bee Orchid
Floating Club Rush
Purple Loose Strife
Common Centaury
Yellow Wort
Greater duck weed
Minuta
Lemna minor
Marsh cinquefoile
Saint John's Wort

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