Witton-le-Wear, County Durham: This tangle of gnarled trees has a hint of the Florida Everglades about it, with mossy, fallen trunks sinking back into the ooze
On an overcast, drizzly afternoon at Durham Wildlife Trust’s Low Barns nature reserve, alder (Alnus glutinosa) provided the brightest splash of colour in the landscape.
A tree had been felled and sawn into logs. Chainsaw wounds on this species can look like a massacre, because soon after the timber is cut, it turns a lurid shade of red, almost like blood, in stark contrast to the battleship-grey bark. Eventually those wounds, which briefly resemble raw meat, fade to orange and finally to chestnut brown.
Country diary: a chainsaw massacre in the alder woods