Before J and I scurried off to Ankara to pick up our visas from the embassy of the IR of Iran, we had ‘discovered’ our first new species of orchid of the season. Not that it’s new to science, you understand, just that we haven’t managed to record it and add it to the list of 31 or 32 growing around Okçular that we know of.
exciting, or what!
Anyway, back to the new discovery – when we first found it I hadn’t got my main camera with me and had made do with a compact. Nothing wrong with these, but I do like a bit of flexibility, so yesterday we wandered off in search of the original and any others that might be around. The little gem was still hiding under its bush and there wasn’t another family member to be seen. I was amazed, given the rain there has been whilst we were away, that it had survived in any condition worth a photo – but there it was, slightly care-worn but still a beauty!
Crawling about in the undergrowth is getting harder by the year and there is a deal of huffing and puffing that accompanies the following photos. I think they were worth it, especially as ‘moody’ is my thing just now!
Ophrys lucis – looking ‘moody’ under natural light
and with a bit of light added
This fellow was keeping a watchful eye on the ‘goings-on’ and it really did let me get this close!
Chalcides ocellatus – Ocellated Skink
After the cold snap the first of the O. anatolica and O. italica are emerging . .
Orchis anatolica – Anatolian Orchid
Orchis italica – Italian Orchid
. . and finally, one of the rarest plants on the planet . .
Alkanna mughlae – a critically endangered endemic member of the Borage Family that is found almost exclusively in Okçular’s Kocadere valley (doesn’t look much, does it?)
Alan Fenn, Okçular Köyü