An English Naturalist in France. Brian Cave, before he moved to France was Director of a Field Centre in the Forest of Dean. He was educated at Christ Church, Oxford, where he read Botany having gained a place with a State Scholarship in 1951. He and his wife Helen retired to France in1998. He is most knowledgeable about the toadstools but he also well informed on the orchids and other plants and the insects and indeed all species (but of course with varying insight) which live on their five hectare estate of fields and woods and in the neighbourhood.

Normally each item in this blog will cover the lives and habits of an individual species in its habitat.

His home web site is (visitors are welcome)
He has a blogsite on Natural History

Recent Posts

Leaf Cutting Bee nests

  My daughter was cleaning out the polytunnel before winter comes upon us. She uses the polytunnel for growing on seedlings for the small flower business which she […]

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An impressive Lichen

There had been a heavy rainstorm with serious wind overnight.  That August 8th the trees were in full leaf.  Branches were hanging heavy with walnut fruits. I  imagined […]

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Ants with yellow spots

  The  ants fall from the walnut tree onto the table below.  They are all so small that you cannot make out any detailed structure.  Under the binocular […]

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  There are 32 species of broomrape listed in the new work on the flora of  France (Flora Gallica by Tison & Foucault). There are 26 in the […]

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Bee and Woodcock orchids

 These two orchids are common enough in our area (40 km north of Cahors).  A is the Woodcock (Ophrys scolopax) and B is the Bee (Ophrys apifera).  [scolopax […]

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Some thoughts on caterpillars

     This caterpillar was photographed on April 26th chewing happily on a leaf of the common plantain (Plantago lanceolata), growing in a pasture  in South Central France.   […]

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Why do some toadstools smell?

For more than twenty years this toadstool (see top photo)  has avoided my attention.  Yesterday – the day of the winter solstice December 21st I found it.  Dozens […]

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Bye Bye Garden Geraniums?

       This  butterfly discovered by my daughter on one of her Geraniums (Perlagoniums) was unknown to her or myself.          At first we mistook it for a long […]

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The Strawberry tree – Arbutus unedo

I felt sure for several years that they were strawberry trees,  but until they flowered and fruited there was always an uncertainty.   Here to the left is the […]

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Paralysed crickets

  In this  drainage groove of a bedroom window, crafted to take away rain water which may have run down the window pane, are fifty seven bodies of  […]

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