Looking at the Countryside-Alverstone Walk

10 members met at Sandown Station last Wednesday for a walk up to Alverstone Mead Nature Reserve and Youngwoods Copse, led by Dave and Hazel Trevan.There was a rare “window” of pleasant weather for the duration of the walk, in an otherwise dull and wet few days.

Blechnum spicant

Blechnum spicant (photo Dave Trevan)

We were fortunate in having Mary Edmunds with us from Wight Nature Fund who was able to give us some interesting information about  the history of Wight Nature Fund and their management of Alverstone Mead Nature Reserve  and Youngwoods Copse.We walked past Sandown Golf Club and onto Alverstone Mead,past Skinners Meadow which Mary explained was a riot of wild flowers earlier in the season.Highland Cows, which are used for habitat  management  were seen and we were told how Kevin the bull, in spite of his inability to perform was purchased by well wishers and now lives his days out on a farm!

The botanists in the group observed some good late flowering stands of Lamium album “White Dead Nettle” and Silene dioeca “Pink Campion”.In the hedgerows some excellent “Butchers Broom”, Ruscus aculeatus were observed, many with large red fruits.In Youngwoods Copse  a fine example of the “Hard Fern” Blechnum spicant was observed by Jackie.


Ornithological Meeting at Shalfleet Quay, 21st November 2015

Nine members met at the Car park in Quay Lane for a short walk to the Quay on a very cold morning. The very strong wind kept many of the birds away. (more…)

Recent Fungi Meetings

We’ve been to fungi meetings at Firestone Copse,Borthwood Copse and Parkhurst Forest recently and we’ve put together an album on Flickr of some of our finds. Most are labelled.To bring up the names, hold the mouse on the left hand side of the image.

Dave and Hazel Trevan


Flammulina velutipes var velutipes

Micrographia Meeting – 14th November

2015 is the 350th anniversary of the most iconic book about microscopy; written by a man born on the Isle of Wight. Spaces are still available for a celebratory meeting to be held at the Medina Valley Centre – see ‘The Society/Forthcoming Meetings’ on this site and book now.

A Walk Around Gatcombe

A large group of members met at Gatcombe Church yesterday where Richard Smout led a walk around the area.

In perfect warm sunny weather we toured the church, had a very informative and interesting local history discussion before a walk to Sheat Manor and a round trip through the glorious autumnal countryside back to Gatcombe.

Comma and Red Admiral Butterflies were seen.Bullfinches were observed and Yellowhammers were heard by some of the group. As the walk concluded a brilliant overhead display by Buzzards made a spectacular end to a memorable morning.

Autumn colours of Norway Maple, Acer platanoides

Autumn colours of Norway Maple, Acer platanoides

Tolt Copse, Gatcombe

Tolt Copse, Gatcombe


Stonehenge Visit 24th October

One place still available.  See below for details.

Stonehenge Visit Saturday 24th October

The programme is as follows:

08.30 meet at the hovercraft terminal to buy tickets etc

08.45 hovercraft to Southsea

09.00 minibus to the Stonehenge area.

11.00 perhaps Woodhenge or other site nearby.

12.30 booked on the ride at Stonehenge

15.30 latest to leave on the minibus for Southsea

17.30 expected Hovercraft from Southsea to Ryde arriving 17.40

It would be a good idea to bring a packed lunch, but food is also available at the cafe.

My mobile telephone number is 07513304465.

 If you wish to book your hovercraft place in advance to save time, you can now book online with a blue card.

Looking forward to seeing everyone.

Eric Johnson

Sue Blackwell discovers new Island plant

Sue has found a plant new to the Island, and to the UK, growing on the south facing bank of Ryde Canoe Lake.


Looking at the Countryside September 8th 2015

Bumper Annual Fungus Foray

Our fungus foray on Saturday 3rd October on the Osborne Estate was a great success. We were joined by several experienced mycologists from the mainland: Alan Outen from Bedfordshire and members of the Hampshire Fungus Recording Group. We had superb weather and we recorded in total some 200 species, a record number for us.