Summer meeting 1975: Arklow, Co Wicklow

HomeEventsSummer meeting 1975: Arklow, Co Wicklow

16 August 1975 - 30 August 1975

Meeting report

The Summer meeting was held from 16 to 30 August. It was centered at Arklow, Co. Wicklow. Six people attended. In the following account Irish National Grid references are given. Localities are in v.-c. H. 20 unless otherwise stated.

17 August. David McArdle (1890) reported that Lough Bray (32/1315) in north Wicklow was rich in hepatics. He recorded 67 species including Frullania fragilifolia, Porella thuja, Bazzania trilobata, Harpanthus, Herberta adunca, Marsupella sphacelata, Moerckia hibernica and Pallavicinia lyellii. None of these species was among the 27 hepatics recorded on the 17th. The ground about the upper lake was searched from the shore to about one third the way to the top of the cliffs and further into some of the gullies. Barbilophozia floerkei, Calypogeia neesiana var. neesiana*, Lepidozia trichoclados, Lophozia incisa, Sphenolobus minutus, Dicranum scottianum, Isothecium holtii and Sphagnum fimbriatum were the most notable species found. Boggy, N-facing fields at Glencree (32/1615) had Cephalozia leucantha*, C. pleniceps*, Lepidozia sylvatica* and Riccardia latifrons*. Oak woodland in the valley bottom interplanted with conifer s had Plagiochila spinulosa, Solenostoma sphaerocarpum, Eurhynchium alopecuroides and Isothecium holtii. Dr. Pitkin pointed out Riccia huebenerana at Vartry reservoir (32/1903) where Fossombronia foveolata* was also found.

* = New vice-county record

18 August. The Devil’s Glen (31/2398) is a deep, wooded river-glen running W. – E. In the river, the Vartry, Porella pinnata is abundant. Dark shaded streams have Jubula hutchinsiae. Lophocolea fragrans is on large flat rocks in deep shade. Neckera crispa and Marchesinia mackaii were found on one outcrop by the river path. Anthoceros laevis*, Cephalozia hampeana, Diplophyllum obtusifolium, Frullania fragilifolia, Lejeunea lamacerina var. azorica, Lophozia incisa, Metzgeria conjugata, Nowellia curvifolia, Porella laevigata, Riccardia palmata*, Riccia glauca, Solenostoma triste, Tritomaria quinquedentata, Cirriphyllum crassinervium, Eurhynchium alopecuroides and Pterogonium gracile were all found in the stretch of over a mile between the castle and the waterfall. Pennycomequick Bridge (31/2778) had Tortella tortuosa; sand-dunes nearby had Eurhynchium megapolitanum and Brachythecium albicans*; clay banks of streams on the west of the road had Epipterygium tozeri* and Funaria fascicularis.

19 August. Spent in Wexford (H. 12). The river, clay banks and scrub west of the bridge south of Clonough Bridge (31/2066) produced Cryphaea heteromalla, Epipterygium tozeri*, Fontinalis squamosa, Leskea polycarpa*, Orthotrichum stramineum, Metzgeria fruticulosa, Pellia neesiana and Riccardia sinuata. Rocky sea shore and clay banks at Clones Strand (31/2464) had Barbula tophacea, Desmatodon convolutus and Pottia crinita and an as yet unidentified maritime Bryum. The bryophytes of Tara Hill (31/2162) are calcifuge. An undistinguished list includes Dicranoweisia cirrata. Tortula ruraliformis was on a tiled roof in shade. At a forestry track and gateway south of Killinierin (31/1665) Anthoceros laevis*, A. husnotii*, Fossombronia wondraczeckii, Lejeunea ulicina and Metzgeria fruticulosa were found. The first Irish record was made of the segregate of Bryum bicolor with numerous small yellow bulbils, first noted in 1948 f rom Cassington Oxfordshire (Trans. Br. bryol. Soc. 1, 245-6, 1949). At Pallis Bridge (31/1168) Dicranella schreberana, Hypnum lindbergii, Orthotrichum striatum and Thuidium delicatulum* were noted at roadside and scrub. Streams and moorland at Croghan (31/1271) on the south side of Croghan Mt. had Acrocladium stramineum, Breutelia, Campylopus atrovirens, Fontinalis antipyretica var. gigantea*, Sphagnum contortum, Calypogeia muellerana* and Scapania irrigua.

20 August. The North Prison (31/0392), which is a west-facing lakeless corrie on Lugnaquilla, was the objective. We crossed the Avonbeg River in Glenmalur at Baravore Ford and struck up through the forestry plantation and over the ridge on the left to the stream, beyond which we picked up the path to the high ground. There is a stiff climb for about 200 ft. and then a level or gently rising part past the stream from Art’s Lough (31/055938) until the 1300ft contour is reached. Here there is a waterfall and ascent is to the east of it over very rough and steep but not difficult or dangerous ground. Then we had a further long trudge over rising ground until we took a west branch of the stream at about 1700ft. and a stiff climb to 2700ft. over the spur that runs NW from the summit. We descended into the North Prison in swirling fog and very stiff winds which made mossing somewhat unpleasant and even a little difficult. Gymnomitrion obtusum* was found on the ridge and Anastr epta orcadensis* (very rare) in the corrie. Drepanocladus exannulatus, Polytrichum alpinum, Sphagnum quinquefarium, S. robustum, AntheIia julacea, Gymnomitrion crenulatum and Lophozia alpestris were also found but there was little variety to compensate for the arduous ascent.

21 August. A Juncus marsh at the west end of the Upper Lake at Glendalough (31/0996) had Sphagnum fimbriatum, S. squarrosum and Haplomitrium hookeri*, the last growing with Scapania irrigua on sandy peat. Weissia controversa. var. densifolia* was on lead-mine waste of which the roadway is made. Marsupella funckii was on banks by the roadway. At the east end of the Upper Lake there is some rocky woodland which produced Metzgeria fruticulosa, Plagiochila spinulosa Sphagnum girgensohnii, S. quinquefarium and Cynodontium bruntonii. About the stream and waterfall nearby (31/1196) Dicranella rufescens, Isothecium holtii, Hygrobiella laxifolia and Marsupella aquatica were noted (the Hygrobiella record for H. 20 in the Census Catalogue has not been traced).

22 August. Willow carr and oak woodland at the E. end of L. Dan (32/1602) was explored. Acrocladium cordifolium, Atrichum crispum, Drepanocladus uncinatus, Funaria obtusa, Hygrohypnum ochraceum, Isothecium holtii, Sphagnum molle*, Thuidium delicatulum, Cryptothallus* and Lejeunea lamacerina var. azorica were found. The afternoon was spent at Luggala above L. Tay (32/1508). This is a deep wooded gorge with a swift stream of cascades and pools, large granite boulders and flat rock faces. Dumortiera is recorded from here but we did not see it. Atrichum crispum, Eurhynchium alopecuroides, Fontinalis squamosa with capsules, Isothecium holtii, Douinia ovata, Marsupella aquatica and Plectocolea paroica were in and by the stream, Dicranum fuscescens, D. scottianum and Plagiochila punctata on wooded slopes and Hygrobiella on wet sloping rock in steep woodland. NowelIia and Tritomaria exsectifor mis were on rotten logs and Frullania fragilifolia on a fallen tree-trunk.

23 August. The Avonbeg R. at Greenan (31/1487) produced Bryum argenteum var. lanatum*, Dicranella rufescens, D. palustris, Rhynchostegiella pumila, Fissidens polyphyllus, Lejeunea lamacerina var. azorica, L. ulicina and Metzgeria fruticulosa. The Ow R. at Aughavannagh (31/0784) produced Atrichum crispum, Mnium affine, Plagiothecium denticulatum, Fossombronia wondraczekii* and Pellia neesiana.

24 August. Rathduffmore Bog (31/0182) is the only surviving piece of raised bog in Co. Wicklow. Much of the ground is cut over and has Sphagnum squarrosum, Cephalozia macrostachya*, Cephaloziella hampeana, C. subdentata*, Lepidozia setacea, L. sylvatica, L. trichoclados, Pallavicinia lyellii, Riccardia latifrons, R. multifida, R. palmata, R. sinuata and Scapania irrigua. On the intact bog Mylia taylori, Sphagnum magellanicum and two small hummocks of S. imbricatum* were found. Blasia pusilla was on the side of a drain. Rahill Fen (21/8784) in H 13 is ¼ mile S. of Yellowford Crossroads to the west of the T42. The rare sedge, Carex appropinquata, grows there. Rich fen species, Acrocladium giganteum, Bryum pseudotriquetrum, Scorpidium scorpioides, Drepanocladus revolvens, Mnium pseudopunctatum* and Brachythecium mildeanum* were seen. Camptothecium lutescens was found on clay banks. Other notable species were Bryum klinggraeffii*, Dicranella schreberana*, Hylocomium brevirostre. Sphagnum squarrosum, Chiloscyphus pa llescens* and Leiocolea turbinata. Holdenstown Bog (21/8785) nearby is in H. 20. It is a poor fen for the most part with Acrocladium stramineum, Leptodictyum riparium and Sphagnum squarrosum but the vegetation at the centre approaches that of raised bog with Polytrichum alpestre, Sphagnum rubellum and Cephaloziella hampeana. A stretch of the Aughrim R. (3 1/1379) hadDichodontium pellucidum, Fissidens viridulus, Fontinalis squamosa, Grimmia alpicola var. rivularis, Hygrohypnum luridum, Hyocomium flagellare, Chiloscyphus polyanthos, Porella pinnata, Solenostoma pumilum and Hygroamblystegium fluviatile.

25 August. L. Ouler is a corrie lake at 1900ft. under Tonelagee (32/00). It is bounded on the south and west sides by high cliffs with numerous flushes, wet rocks and block scree. These have Amphidium mougeotii, Ctenidium molluscum var. condensatum, Diphyscium foliosum, Anthelia julacea, Barbilophozia floerkei, Calypogeia trichomanis*, Gymnomitrion obtusum, Lepidozia pearsonii*, L. trichoclados, Marsupella sphacelata, M. ustulata*, Plagiochila punctata, Plectocolea obovata and Tritomaria quinquedentata. Leptodontium flexifolium was found on burnt peat and Grimmia patens on boulders by the lake. Disused buildings and mine waste at the old lead workings below L. Nahanagan (31/0998) had Gymnostomum recurvirostrum, Weissia controversa var. densifolia and Cephaloziella stellulifera*. An unusual Dicranella varia with stems over 9 cm long, showing 5 – 6 annual growth increments was found on a dripping bank on the north side of the road.

26 August. The day was spent in Wexford (H. 12). Duffcarraig rocks on the coast (31/2158) had Grimmia maritima, Tortella flavovirens and Leiocolea turbinata. Near the bridge on the L3 east of Courtown (31/1856), Omalia, Neckera pumila, Plagiothecium succulentum, Tortula laevipila and T. latifolia* were on trees by the roadside or in the deep wooded gorge under the bridge. Carraiganeagh Rock (31/1557) is an Ordovician sandstone. It is partly quarried. Bartramia pomiformis was abundant on ledges and in crevices. Also found were Dicranoweisia cirrata, Epipterygium tozeri, Orthotrichum pulchellum*, Metzgeria fruticulosa and Radula complanata. A boggy field at Whitewood (31/0454) had Acrocladium cordifolium, Drepanocladus exannulatus var. exannulatus and Pellia neesiana. The R. Bann is a tributary of the Slaney. At a bridge north of Camolin (31/0753), Dicranella rufescens*, Epi pterygium tozeri, Funaria attenuata*, Orthotrichum sprucei*, O. diaphanum and Porella pinnata* were found. Sphagnum contortum and Drepanocladus exannulatus var. exannulatus were found in the valley at Slieveboy (31/0258). A bridge ¾ mile NE of Knockbrandon (31/0763) had fine tufts of Distichium capillaceum*. Bryum radiculosum was found nearby. A quarry at Cummer Vale (31/0666) had Barbula hornschuchiana, Hypnum lindbergii, Lophozia bicrenata and Riccia sorocarpa.

27 August. In H. 13, ¾ mile E. of the Nine Stones (21/8254) a stream has dug out a V-shaped defile on the N.side of Mt. Leinster. Funaria obtusa*, Anthelia julacea*, Barbilophozia floerkei*, Lepidozia trichoclados, Lophozia incisa*, Nardia compressa*, Riccardia latifrons and R. multifida* were recorded. On the Wexford side (H. 12) of Mt. Leinster at Cloroge (21/8449) flat moorland and forest tracks, drains and walls had Bartramia pomiformis, Ditrichum cylindricum, Drepanocladus fluitans var. falcatus*, Gymnocolea inflata, Lepidozia trichoclados* and Marsupella funckii*. A stream and boggy field on SE side of Black Rock Mt. , H. 12 (21/8650), had Dichodontium pellucidum, Cephalozia connivens*, Lepidozia setacea* and Riccardia latifrons.

28 August. The morning was spent in Glencullen R. Glen at Enniskerry (32/2118). This area is covered with calcareous drift. The river flows between steep banks and is approached from the T43 by an open forestry road. Brachythecium glareosum, B. mildeanum*, Philonotis calcarea, Leiocolea badensis and Plectocolea hyalina were found on the track and Barbula spadicea, Cratoneuron commutatum, Eucladium, Fissidens rufulus*, F. curnowii*, Rhynchostegiella teesdalei, Trichostomum crispulum var. elatum*, T. tenuirostre, Solenostoma triste and S. pumilum by the river. Powerscourt waterfall (32/2012) , a favourite collecting ground for 19th century bryologists, is an impressive cascade. The cliffs in the immediate area of the fall are rather dangerous with loose rock and unstable boulders. It has the usual Wicklow species of acid rock and swift-flowing stream. The following were noted, Eurhynchium alopecuroides, Isothecium holtii, Rhynchostegiella pumila, Cephaloziella starkei, Nardia compressa, Nowellia curvifolia and Solenostoma sphaerocarpum. Orthotrichum Lyellii and Leucodon sciuroides were on the oaks in the park. Ephemerum serratum var. serratum was found at the dried up northern end of the Vartry reservoir (32/2006).

29 August. A badly poached Sphagnum fen to the N. of Avoca (31/2181) had Dicranum bonjeanii, Drepanocladus exannulatus var.rotae*, Sphagnum fimbriatum, Splachnum ampullaceum, Cephaloziella stellulifera, Lepidozia setacea, Riccardia latifrons, R. multifida and large mats of Solenostoma crenulatum. Chiloscyphus pallescens* was found in a small marshy field nearer Avoca. South of Avoca the river is polluted with washings from the copper mines. Woodland, railway track and riverside here had little that was unusual.

During the meeting a list was compiled for the Arklow town area, sea wall, riverside, waste ground and fields. It includes Barbula hornschuchiana*, B. microerythrocarpum*, Funaria fascicularis, Tortula ruralis and Dicranella rufescens.

I wish to thank Dr. Pitkin for his help on the meeting and Mrs. Paton and Mr. Perry for dealing so cheerfully with the extra work that a small but long meeting imposed on them.


McArdle D. (1890). Hepaticae of Loughbray, Co. Wicklow. J. Bot. 28, 356 – 360

D. Synnott


Arklow, Co Wicklow