Earthworm Calling Wil (?)

A post DaNES show ponk and a follow-up on Monday was well worth the chilly weather.

Today, the post was powered by Ignition by The Offspring. Possibly their best album.

DaNES Show 21.xi.2015

The Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire Entomological Show was well worth the 45 mins bus ride, it certainly made quick business of removing the hang over from my besties birthday party the night before. It ended up being ‘how many books, journals and papers can we carry’, periodically me and MS had to swap about and redistribute the treasures from the day. I managed to pick up the Flora of Lincolnshire by E J Gibbons – I’m a sucker for anything with Linkisheer splattered all over it, once a yellow belly, always a yellow belly. MS very kindly purchased the Invertebrate Flora of Nottinghamshire, J.W Carr 1916, an insight in part in to the works of the old recorders. As well as purchasing books, people were chucking free copies of journals and papers at us, possibly a benefit of wear my President of the Conservation Society t-shirt? Sneeky eh! The best bit of the whole show was putting some faces to the names of the people we have been speaking to online through email forums and FB groups.

K. Lugg was at the show and invited me and MS for a session out recording the next day, this is what we found…

Brackenhurst Muck Heap 22.xi.2015

We had spent the morning in Sherwood Forest and decided to spend the last part of the day sieving the muck at the uni campus I study at, and where the DaNES show was held the day before. KL was looking for a woodlouse usually associated with muck heaps. MS turned up a candidate…

Porcellionides pruinosus, Plum woodlouse

Porcellionides pruinosus, Plum woodlouse

Porcellionides pruinosus, Plum woodlouse. No modern records of this species have been found by Eakring Birds, I’m sure they will be more than pleased with this one. It has been recorded in the county by the old school naturalists Pearson and J.W. Carr, the notes are in the Invertebrate Fauna of Nottinghamshire by J.W Carr 1916. On the BMIG website (here) it does state that the species is probably under recorded – don’t people like looking through dung for inverts!? They should start looking more….

Philonthus spinipes

Philonthus spinipes

Philonthus spinipes. MS found the second notable species in the dug heap shortly after the above. This was found in the gutter running around the outside of the heap, in with the leaf litter. It is a large rove beetle that struck me as being very easy to get an ID on at home. It was potted and taken back to Ponk HQ. Using the key by Lott, The Staphylinidae (rove beetles) of Britain and Ireland (Parts 7 and 8), I had a name for the rove in front of me. It took a little searching but I came across an article on the Coleopterist journal website in the back issues section. This species of rove beetle was new to Britain in Dorset by Allen and Owen (1997). I can’t find a record for this anywhere in Nottinghamshire, the likely hood is that this species may well be a new county record.

ALLEN, A.J. & OWEN, J.A. 1997. Philonthus spinipes Sharp (Staphylinidae) In Dorset – new to Britain. The Coleopterist 6: 81-83.


Kelham Country Park in Nottinghamshire 23.xi.2015.

On arrival it didn’t take long to find some suitable habitat to start searching. Surrounded by a few trees, mostly yews, some logs which looked as though they are in place as rough benches stood out. KL and myself turned a number of them, so quite large and found a number of species underneath.

Calathus rotundicollis

Calathus rotundicollis

Calathus rotundicollis –  A new species for me and one I’ve been looking for. Quite a distinctive ground beetle with a red edged and almost round pronotum. I had an inkling what it was but potted it up to make sure. A number of these were found under most of the three or four logs we turned. Alongside them was the usual suspects, Nebria brevicollis and a token Pterostichus madidus.

Not a usual suspect on my list, a nice easy slug was pointed out which is another new addition,

Tandonia budapestensis, Budapest Slug. Another distinctive species worth looking out for, a number of features make it an easy one in the field. The trouble I’ve had with slugs is mostly I’ve ended up trying to ID Arion species – not the easiest. KL passed me this, one of three found underneath one of the shady logs. Immediately it stood out, while not active it was curled in a ‘C’, I could also see it had a ridge down the length from the mantle onwards. The last feature KL pointed out was the black stripe on white on the underside of it, on its sole. I didn’t photograph it myself (stupidly), here is a link to the nature spot website where all the features described can be seen.

The next notable find came when searching through a brick stacked by the side of the river Trent. I was about to give up turning bricks when I noticed a pseudoscorpian. I had the pooter ready and sucked it up. Since then I photographed it at home and sent the specimen to Dr Legg who has confirmed my initial thoughts,

Neobisium carcinoides. The full break down of this species and its history of the county is on the Eakring Birds website found here,

Neobisium carcinoides

Neobisium carcinoides

Also in the stack was the harvest man Paroligolophus agrestis.

The last and probably best record for the day came from a rotten tree stump, of some size too, in the middle of a lawn behind a large hall looking building. KL had spoken of a rare deadwood earthworm, one he had found in Oxford recently after its absence from the record books for some 30 odd years. I peeled back some bark and passed him a small adult worm, an adult worm has a saddle I’m told! He was very excited and for good reason.

Dendrobaena pygmaea. The record with accompanying pics has been accepted on iRecord, now two entries for this tiny worm are on iRecord, one by KL and one by the both of us. I can’t find a lot out about this worm, I’m hoping that with its recent re-discovery that perhaps that might write something up about its ecology – or something. Maybe I was lazy on the Google search. Previous to this year only four records existed for it, that has almost doubled to 7! Photos by K Lugg.

Dendrobaena pygmaea

Dendrobaena pygmaea



Forgive the inevitable typing errors, I’m busy and had a tadgical of time to squeeze a blog out,

Ponk on!



About BeetlePunk

A naturalist from the best county in England, Lincolnshire.
This entry was posted in Beetles, Harvestmen, nottighamshire, Pan Listing Species, Photos and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Earthworm Calling Wil (?)

  1. My girlfriend’s daughter has moved to Nottingham. So we’ll be visiting from time to time. Maybe if I can escape I can join you sometime for a ponk in Sherwood Forest? Incidentally, I’ve met Keith quite a few times during various BENHS workshops and understand he’s keen on worms :0)

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