Thursday, 11 August 2022

Professorpublishes new book on woods

PROFESSOR Richard Fortey has published a new book.

PROFESSOR Richard Fortey has published a new book.

The Henley naturalist and palaeontologist has spent three years researching life on a four-acre plot in Lambridge Woods on the outskirts of the town, which he bought in 2011.

The Wood for the Trees: A Long View of Nature from a Small Wood, documents a notional year in the life of the woodland.

Prof Fortey, who lives in St Andrew’s Road and works at the Natural History Museum in London, discovered more than 600 species in the area, which is a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest, including flowering plants, animals and fungi.

His discoveries included a plant with no chlorophyll, a dormouse nest, seven species of bat and a jewel beetle, which is normally associated with the tropics.

He also found a number of scarce, listed species, including a tiny beech bark beetle.

The book, which took him six months to write, will detail the wildlife he found in the woodland, its history and his notes on it.

Prof Fortey has lived in Henley for about 30 years and leads woodland walks three or four times a year in the area.

A book launch party was held at the Bell Bookshop in Henley on Wednesday where Prof Fortey gave a short talk and signed copies.

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