Having discovered the CPN website and its ongoing beetle survey, and since yesterday was unbelievably sunny for November, Chris, Rors and I decided to go for a stroll along woodland walk at nearby Ste Sévère and look out for these insects. I printed out a record sheet for Rors, stole a clipboard off Caiti, and we were set.

Ste Sévère is a beautiful little town in neighbouring departément Indre.

The walk begins just down the road from the shooting club the guys go to, next to this moving monument.

Poor brave Pierre Boury, killed by the Nazis in July 1944 when he was only 20. Our Benj will be 20 soon. Life’s only just got going at that age.

Rors raced ahead, enthusiastically searching for beetles (coléopt__ères – probably my second favourite French word after trombinoscope!). But despite looking in all the likely places, he only caught of a glimpse of a couple of beetles.

They didn’t hang around long enough to be photographed and described in detail.

We saw a lot more toadstools. Here are a few intriguing examples.

So we gave up on trying to collect coléopt__ère-related data and simply enjoyed the walk. OK, so we go a little lost but doing so, discovered a fascinating area of rocky outcrops. My camera batteries had run out by then, but we’ll definitely be going back and I’ll take some pics then.

And the reason we didn’t see many beetles is most likely because they’re hibernating or certainly slowing down. Invertebrates become a lot more inactive during the cold months, apart from grubs inside trees and stumps who are well insulated, or deep ground dwelling beetles. They don’t notice outside temperatures.

We’ll have to wait till spring to count our coléopt__ères.