Originally published in the Manchester Guardian on 20 June 1916

June 19.
Deep purple marsh orchids pushed their sturdy, densely-packed heads through the damp turf, and graceful white flowers hung from the upright stalks of the wintergreens. These were in the level spaces between the dunes, but on the sand itself the pink-flowered bindweeds were out, trailing up the slopes and striving to hold the shifting grains. Good as the bindweed is, it is less effective than the restharrow, whose sticky leaves were dusted with blown particles though its matted roots held firm enough, firmer even than the marram grass, actually planted to stop the shifting of the sand.

Blue butterflies enjoyed the sunshine, settling to close their bright wings when a cloud obscured the sun, and lizards lay basking, but not sleeping, almost invisible upon the sand. Predatory tiger beetles, green gems, quartered the slopes like sporting dogs, then rising, whisked down wind to the next dune; and large, metallic-coated flies, their prey, dropped on the warm sand for a moment, ready to dart off sideways from even the shadow of the foe. The ringed plover whistled plaintively as it strove to lure us from the neighbourhood of its nest, now flying, now running swiftly to attract our attention, but the noisy redshanks, well dubbed “yelpers,” kept up an incessant din as they rapidly flew round and round, or passed above, yelping hard, with quivering wings and expanded, wedge-shaped tails.

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Source: Guardian Environment