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From the Clifftop-The Firehills

A short walk west along the clifftop takes me to the Firehills, an area of Hastings Country Park NR which used to be extensively covered in  leggy gorse, which I always found rather dull. The removal of much of this a couple of years ago was not popular with everyone, but the results are proving very interesting.

Not far along, below the wartime viewpoint, is a wet flush, now revealed, and  two sedges not recorded here since at least 1978 have appeared [thanks to Jacqueline Rose for naming these for me !] : Green-ribbed Sedge Carex binervis , and Common Yellow Sedge, Carex demissa. Also appearing here are red  patches of the strange gorse parasite Common Dodder, unrecorded here since 1991 or earlier, though more recently found further west., the pretty blue flowers of Heath Milkwort, and lots of Heather. This is probably the result of seed from Ashdown Forest being scattered here two years ago, though a small amount was already present.

Also around the Flush are a number of small day-flying moths, especially in the early morning, these seem to be Timothy Tortix, and one other species I'm still working on, nearby I was pleased to see the first fledged juvenile Stonechat I've ever seen in the Country Park yesterday-the removal of so much gorse hasn't deterrred the birds. Also of interest yesterday were 8 Common Scoters just below the cliffs, and a Little Egret on Covehurst beach.

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