Flanders Moss NNR
This warm spell of weather has been fantastic for lots of different types of wildlife though the bogs themselves are now looking a bit crispy. The other day while carrying out the water level monitoring it became apparent that one form of life was doing especially well. The flies out in the middle of the moss were awful or fantastic depending on your point of view. Awful for Finn and myself as every time we stopped they descended and the longer we stood still the more appeared. These were not just annoying house flies but biting clegs and monster horse flies amongst others. So a bit unpleasant for us but for the ecologist it is great, not just because of the range of species, each one having an important niche in the ecosystem of the moss but also as flies = food for birds feeding young, spiders, lizards and a host of other creatures.
I once worked with an Indian lady on an outlying field site where there were huge numbers of flies and she would say “Hindu or no Hindu flies die” as she would try to swat as many as possible. But on Flanders Moss, despite the buzzing cloud and swollen lumps we are trying to have a more open mind about them.
One of the scars on the back of my left hand beside the scars from geocaching and gardening, is that from the bite of a cleg – it made me a true believer!
Oh my! Am I smiling – I was there with that Indian lady tolerating the flies at the tip of Long Point Peninsula 25 years ago. Great training for the future Reserve Manager of Flanders Moss!