It was early July. Many of my local naturalist groups were lighting up about all the interesting orchids that were popping up.
Carolyn asked if I wanted to join her exploring the area for a day and I agreed, mostly because we hadn’t caught up in ages. (In my defense, the first 6 months of the year were a mental health write off). I’m still not really into orchids yet but I always welcome opportunities to learn more.
As it turned out, I had a fab day. Mostly because of the moss and lichen about! There is so much variety. This part of Anglesea can be a bit tricky to get to without a car, but I’m definitely putting this area (and many nearby nature reserves) on the agenda for when I get my licence. It’s so cool. Bugger the birds 🙂
It was these helmet orchids that were getting a lot of attention via various Facebook groups. I think the below is Corybas diemenicus, the Veined Helmet Orchid. It doesn’t look veiny enough though. A different friend saw Corybas unguiculatus, the Small Helmet Orchid, around the same time, however it is described as:
the first of our Helmet Orchids to appear each year, with leaves usually being observed in May. It is an uncommon species in the district, but over the past few years, some excellent colonies have been observed at Moggs Creek.
And this is why I don’t want to add another obsession to the list 🙂 It was lovely to get close to, even if it doesn’t set my nerdiness on fire the way moss does.
We did find some other interesting specimens in the region, although only one other orchid type. I’m so in love with the biodiversity of this area and am looking forward to exploring it more. This trip reminded me of why its worth putting up with the really difficult parts of mental health recovery – this is the reward.