10 August – The Dragonflies of Sussex- A good…

Saturday 10th August 2024 1.30pm – 3pm at the Discovery Centre.

Presented by Alan Martin.

This talk describes changes to the status of dragonflies in Sussex over the last 20 years, focussing on those that can be found in and around Rye.

For many years Alan has been a birder but in more recent years has expanded his interests to include butterflies, moths and now dragonflies.

In the last three years, he has been focused on recording and photographing all the species that can be found in the Rye area, and is currently working on a new book about the Dragonflies of Sussex.

These talks are for members of The Friends of Rye Harbour Nature Reserve only. There is no charge, though donations are gratefully accepted. If you are not a member of The Friends but would like to attend, please JOIN US and let us know.

Limited places are available and booking for members of The Friends will open at 8.00am on 1st July.

Please note that dogs (except for guide dogs that have been pre-booked) are not allowed at talks.

Past Events

Talk 14 Oct 2023

Gardening for Insects by Chris Bentley

During the afternoon of ‘Friends’ day on Saturday 14th October, former warden Chris Bentley gave an excellent talk in the Discovery Centre on ‘Gardening for Insects’ to members of The Friends.

Chris is well known both locally and nationally for his passion and expertise relating to insects. Both of these aspects came through in his talk which was very well received by the audience.

His comprehensive talk included facts about the staggering numbers of insects that can be found in gardens, including common insects that we all may be able to identify – perhaps with a little help from technology! He also talked about what insects need and gave suggestions for lots of insect friendly plants and landscape features that can benefit insects.

The importance of insects cannot be underestimated and potentially catastrophic, recent declines are well known and publicised. The BTO suggest that the gardens of the UK make up an area approximately the size of Suffolk, therefore what we do in our gardens is important.

Chris’s talk provided lots of inspiration and as Tesco says ’Every little helps!’

Past Events

Recording Day 21 Aug 2023

On the morning of 21st August 2023, a group of Friends spent three hours looking up, down and all around to find and record as many different species of flora and fauna on the reserve as possible.
The Reserve was split into sections and each team designated an area that suited their area of expertise.

95 species of birds were recorded, which included Wheatear, Whinchat, Spotted Flycatcher and Yellow Wagtail. In addition, over 150 different plant species were recorded, including Buckwheat, which was a first for the reserve!

For invertebrates, two moth traps ran overnight in different locations and produced over 70 different species. Bees and butterflies, including several Brown Argus, were also recorded. Other notable recordings included the Scarce 7-spot Ladybird, Short-winged Conehead, a colony of Mottled Grasshopper and this wonderful Superb Dayglower hoverfly (Xanthogramma pedissequum).

Photo credit Theresa Turner

Plants are often overlooked as you wander along, but whoever looks at galls on plants? Well, one of the team did, and even identified the culprit! Wild Carrot galls are caused by the midge Kiefferia pericarpiicola.

Photo credit Ralph Hobbs

Between us, we were able to record a snapshot of what was on or flying over the Reserve that morning. Not too scientific maybe, but recording is so important, and usually throws up some nice surprises.

A really enjoyable three hours was had by all who took part.