This is an historical archive of the activities of the MRC Anatomical Neuropharmacology Unit (MRC ANU) that operated at the University of Oxford from 1985 until March 2015. The MRC ANU established a reputation for world-leading research on the brain, for training new generations of scientists, and for engaging the general public in neuroscience. The successes of the MRC ANU are now built upon at the MRC Brain Network Dynamics Unit at the University of Oxford.

Wildflower Meadow Under Development

This summer the Unit's wild flower meadow surrounding our entrance and carpark is flourishing. The prominent red campion's pink flowers are easy to spot; some of the other species include: white campion, cuckoo flower, wood avens, bird's foot trefoil, ribwort plantain, wild strawberry, black mustard, yellow rattle, white dead-nettle, black medic, teasel, cowslip and columbine. We have a Common Spotted Orchid flower spike growing, and hopefully this will open in the next few weeks. The meadow, although small, has a range of different conditions; from the full sun of the left-hand side, to the dark corner above the bike sheds; which will help it support a good range of species. The yellow rattle is a parasite of grasses, and so helps keep the grass from becoming too large or successful and out-competeing the flowering dicot species.

Wildflower meadows have declined by 97% since the 1930s. Last week, the Prince of Wales publically supported a project by Plantlife, the Wildlife Trusts and Rare Breeds Survival Trust on the 60th Anniversary of the Coronation. The project aims to create "Coronation Meadows", as well as a comprehensive inventory of the nations remaining meadows. One meadow will be announced in each county by the end of the year. The first 60 were announced last week to mark the 60 years since the Coronation, but the target is 107. News item at BBC. Telegraph article.

Common Carder-Bee (Bombus pascuorum) visits Red Campion (Silene dioica)
White Campion (Silene latifolia) with Bird's Foot Trefoil (Lotus corniculatus) in background
Yellow rattle (Rhinanthus minor)
Herb Bennett or Wood Avens (Geum urbanum)
Silver birch leaf
Wild strawberry (Fragaria vesca)
Under development
Ribwort Plantain (Plantago lanceolata)
Red campion (Silene dioica)