Nature Table Number.1. 2019-Holkham Beach 8.2.19

I loved the visit to Holkham beach on Friday it was wonderful. This is the first nature table of the year. There was a lovely crab shell somewhere in my pocket but it disappeared!

I am using an old card table for the first nature table of the year , looks great.

The table starts with a walk through the pine woods along a board walk, it was very windy. The wind had detached some large cones, the trees were heavily laden with cones.

Other trees as you enter the dune area are the evergreen Holm Oak. These were planted in the eighteenth century by the third Earl of Leceister

There are three species of pine tree in the dune areas , Scots,Corsican and Maritime.

As you leave the board walk you walk into a panoramic seascape of dunes ,sand and maritime plants/marsh.

The walk towards the sea is full of changing habitats and finds.

Sand dunes with tough maram grassesgully’s gut into the tough plant areas.

Walking out towards the sea negotiating inlets , water and squishy spots was great fun .The sand itself is interesting, smooth areas, deep rippled areas and banks of areas littered with shells. All the while the wind was whipping up the dry sand .

On the nature table some of the shell finds :-

Whelks , the smaller one at the bottom of the picture was a surface for tube worms.

Below are red whelks.

These spiral shells of marine molluscs are very beautiful but the weathered and broken shells revealing the internal structure are even more interesting.

Other shell finds-

Very large mussel with mother of Pearl inside . The shell is very thick , survived till old.

Oysters- some of them very large.In the UK, we have three species of oyster: the Pacific Oyster, the Native Oyster, and the Kumamoto Oyster

Variegated scallop,razor shells , pullet carpet shells and the super striped thick trough shell.

Across the sand the areas of shells were like carpets .

Other finds not on the table: cockles and bryozoans attached to pebbles.

There were almost no seaweeds on the beach we saw a few holdfasts only.

This is a beach area that needs to be visited time and again through the year . It was fantastic.

A super nature table of the visit.

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