Nature News
Cookstown Wildlife Trust
Founded: November 1960
© R.Irvine2019
We are indebted to Sebastian Graham who has researched earlier records of plants,butterflies,moths and litchens. Many of these were obtained by a naturalist who recorded extensively in East Tyrone just over a century ago-McGregor Greer. Greer lived at Tullylagan Manor. They make an interesting comparison with present day flora and fauna. Many are still to be found,but others alas are gone. Records of lichens were due to Dr.Oswald Fenton who worked as a botanist in Q.U.B.but lived just outside Cookstown . Click to enlarge. Click to enlarge. Botanical notes from 1937
Thalictrum flavum ( Common Meadow Rue) is still found in damp meadowland to the left going towards Hendersons Filling Station near M1. Aquiligia vulgaris (Columbine) occurs occasionally-perhaps not actually native. Cardamine amara (Large Bittercress) common beside Ballinderry river in flushy areas. Sisymbrium alliaria (Garlic Mustard) much more common now? Epilobium augustifolium (Rosebay Willowherb), now very common. Lobelia dortmanni (Water Lobelia) only sometimes seen flowering in Lough Fea Vaccinium oxycoccus (Cranberry) just north of path at north end of L.Fea. Lysimachia Nummularia (Creeping Jenny) seen some years ago in same place. Mimulus guttatus (Monkeyflower), still a patch in Lissan and plenty along Ballinderry. Pinguicula lusitanica (Pale Butterwort) still there. Orchis pyramidalis (Pyramidal Orchid) not seen,but must have been fairly common? Scirpus sylvaticus.Several records by Ian McNeill Osmunda regalis (Royal Fern) still a few clumps in one bog. Equisitum hyemale (Dutch Rush) still found fairly often. Lycopodium clavatum (Stags Horn Clubmoss) on Slieve Gallion
Marjoram still in Cummings quarry Parnassia palustris(Grass of Parnassus) now gone completely from East Tyrone!
Allium ursinum (Wild Garlic) still plentiful Pyrola minor (Common Wintergreen)-still hangs on, on limestone in Loughry Lithospermum officinale (Gromwell)-probably gone. Antennaria dioica (Mountain Everlasting) only seen at roadside on Slieve Gallion. Geum rivale (Water Avens) still plenty) Gymnodenia conopsea (Fragrant Orchid)-still to be found Ceterach officinarum (Rusty-back fern) still at Killymoon Lathraea squamaria(toothwort) still occasional. Leucorchis albida (Small White Orchid) only seen near Orritor many years ago.
Equisetum trachyodon and Equisitum variegatum still to be found at same sites Rubus saxitalis(Stone Bramble) Craigballyharkey?? Prunus padus (Bird Cherry) still found.
The Green Veined White seems to have been much rarer than it now. The Silver-Washed Fritillary appears to have been much more common than now. The Marsh Fritillary occurs in several worked-out bogs-it might therefore be worth having a look,and may still be found. Peacocks possibly more common now than they were a century ago. Painted ladies still have the same variability-depending on migration. Large Heath is perhaps less common. Common Blue is still local, and as observed then, appears to be brighter than coastal specimens. Death Head Hawk Moth probably just as uncommon. Eyed Hawk Moth, I have not seen in this area. Narrow bordered Five Spot Burnet Moth we have recently seen near Dungannon