Tephroseris integrifolia ssp maritima   South Stack Fleawort RRR DD N Welsh Endemic

Tephroseris integrifolia ssp maritima

At South Stack you can find one or two of these plants growing down the steep cliff face near the Ellin Tower belonging to the R.S.P.B. so they are often too dangerously situated to get decent photos or even see properly.   It flowers at nesting time so the birders are out in force with their telescopes, elbowing each other out of the way to get the best view. Not much chance for a botanist without a black belt.

The majority of the population isn't here though, it's further down the coast towards Trearddur Bay and there are small car parks which allow access both owned by the R.S.P.B. The first allows access to the cliffs further along towards Trearddur Bay but a short walk along the cliffs from the Ellin Tower. Here Tephroseris integrifolia ssp maritima covers the steep cliffs including the inaccessible one which sticks out into the sea. At the second a short car journey away from South Stack, the Field Fleawort grows undisturbed by birding hordes in hundreds at the edge of the fields near the flat cliff tops. Photography is easier at this site. In fact these places near the South Stack lighthouse on Anglesey are the only sites for this sub species which looks quite different from Tephroseris integrifolia ssp integrifolia. For this reason it is sometimes known as the South Stack Fleawort.

Take care if you go to look for it - the heathland is full of adders.

Field Near South Stack, Anglesey 27th May 2003

Amended on November 29th 2004, amended February 5th 2005, corrected Dec 6th 2007, updated 14th February 2012

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