Merrow Downs: flora, butterflies and conservation

a talk given by Gillian and Ken Elsom for MRA Autumn Meeting on Zoom, 19/10/2020
Some useful information for MRA members arising from this meeting by G & K Elsom

Useful references and websites:

Plants:

• If you are interested in learning about & recording plants in Surrey join Surrey Botanical Society http://www.surreyflora.org.uk/index.php

• For a beginners guide to flora with excellent photos see ‘Harrap’s Wild Flowers A Field Guide to the Wild Flowers of Britain & Ireland’, Simon Harrap, 2013, ISBN: 9781472966483 https://www.amazon.co.uk/s?k=Harrap%27s+Wild+Flowers&i=stripbooks&ref=nb_sb_noss_2

• For a more comprehensive, very well illustrated and up to date guide to plants try ‘Collins Wild Flower Guide, 2nd Edition’, David Streeter, 2016, ISBN: 9780008156756, see https://www.amazon.co.uk/Collins-Flower-Guide-David-Streeter/dp/0008156751

• If you are interested in learning about native orchids in the UK join the Hardy Orchid Society, see https://www.hardyorchidsociety.org.uk/

For a pocket guide to orchids see ‘A Pocket Guide to the Orchids of Britain and Ireland’, Simon Harrap, 2016, ISBN: 9781472969095 https://www.amazon.co.uk/s?k=Pocket+Guide+to+the+Orchids+of+Britain+and+Ireland&i=stripbooks&ref=nb_sb_noss

• For the most recent and beautifully illustrated guide to orchids see ‘Britain’s Orchids, A Field Guide to the Orchids of Great Britain and Ireland’, Sean Cole and Mike Waller, 2020, ISBN: 9780691177618 https://www.amazon.co.uk/Britains-Orchids-Britain-Ireland-WILDGuides/dp/0691177619 or https://www.nhbs.com/britains-orchids-a-field-guide-to-the-orchids-of-great-britain-and-ireland-book

Butterflies:
• If you are interested in learning about & recording butterflies in Surrey join Butterfly Conservation https://butterfly-conservation.org/in-your-area/surrey-and-sw-london-branch

• If you would like to walk a butterfly transect contact Bill Downey, the BC Surrey Transect Coordinator, volunteers are needed, see https://butterfly-conservation.org/in-your-area/surrey-and-sw-london-branch/transects-wcbs

• Best pocket butterfly field guide for beginners ‘Pocket Guide to the Butterflies of Great Britain and Ireland, Second Edition’, Richard Lewington, 2015, ISBN: 9781472967176 https://www.amazon.co.uk/Pocket-Butterflies-Britain-Ireland-Guides-dp-1472967178/dp/1472967178/ref=dp_ob_title_bk

See also ‘The Butterflies of Surrey Revisited’ (Surrey Wildlife Atlas Series), 2013, ISBN: 9780955618840 https://www.surreywildlifetrust.org/shop#!/Butterflies-of-Surrey-Revisited/p/116649747/category=31407261

• The best website on butterflies in the UK apart from BC https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/index.php

• Best free app for recording butterflies iRecord Butterflies https://www.brc.ac.uk/irecord/

• The most comprehensive book on ‘Life Cycles of British and Irish Butterflies’, Peter Eeles, 2019, ISBN: 9781874357889 https://www.nhbs.com/life-cycles-of-british-irish-butterflies-book

• One of the most inspiring book on butterflies ‘The Butterfly Isles’, Patrick Barkham, 2010, ISBN: 9781783784585 https://www.nhbs.com/search?q=The+Butterfly+Isles&qtview=176477

Conservation:
• If you would like to help with future conservation work on North Downs let BC Surrey Conservation Volunteers know https://butterfly-conservation.org/in-your-area/surrey-and-sw-london-branch/work-parties Contact is Bill Downey

• See ‘Small Blues in Surrey’ Facebook public group https://www.facebook.com/groups/131452784139981

• See also ‘Wealden Wood Whites’ Facebook public group for conservation work to protect Surrey’s rarest butterfly, the Wood White https://www.facebook.com/groups/2364092273907018

• If you would just like to help with conservation on Merrow Downs, contact MRA Environment Officer: Stephen Rudd, environment@merrowresidents.org.uk who will forward details of any specific work parties undertaken by BC Surrey Conservation Volunteers on Merrow Downs