Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Seeing the Changes 335

Very icy down by the river Loughor. Perhaps the cold drove a Red fox (Vulpes vulpes) out to forage in daylight around 14:00 hours at Bynea!

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

There Are Flies on Us

Interesting that an alien Latticed stinkhorn or Red Cage fungus (Clathrus ruber) has been recorded in Bishop's Wood Nature Reserve near Caswell on the Gower (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-south-west-wales-11775363 ). The foul-smelling (like rotting meat) fungus attracts flies but has not previously been recorded in Wales.  

Sunday, 21 November 2010

Birder's Bonus 79

At Penclacwydd, threatened by a noisy Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes).

Seeing the Changes 334

Noted some Orange peel fungus (Aleuria aurantia) on dead Gorse at Penclacwydd. On the marsh there, horses were doing a sterling job mowing down the vegetation (important for some bird and insect species).

Losing Our Stripes?

There is recent sad news that the South China tiger (Panthera tigris amoyensis), a sub-species that is thought to be the ancestor of all tigers, is effectively extinct (http://www.worldwildlife.org/species/finder/southchinatiger/southchinatiger.html ). Not only has the beast not been seen in the wild for more than 25 years but it has recently been demonstrated, using molecular techniques, that the 'South China tigers' maintained by captive breeding in China are actually hybrids.

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Around the Horn

News that the South African Government is to 'fight fire with fire' in an attempt to prevent the decimation of the country's rhinoceros is timely but disturbing (http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/nov/16/south-africa-war-on-poachers). Apparently, rhino horn is now worth more than gold in Chinese and Vietnamese markets as it has been claimed that a minister from the latter country was cured of cancer by taking the powdered material. This has led to the numbers of rhinoceros being killed by poachers in South Africa more than doubling this year (compared to 2009) to more than 260. Some farmers are said to be attacked on the suspicion that they might have rhino horn in the farm safe! It is all a little sad that conservation of these animals is imperilled in the search for something that has at best only a placebo action. They might just as well use powdered human hair.

Friday, 12 November 2010

Birder's Bonus 78

Strange goings on on the River Loughor near Bynea where a group of Black-headed gulls (Larus ridibundus) were going wild for something in the water. Sewage?

Monday, 8 November 2010

Autumn Mists at Golden Grove


Went for a nice walk at the Arboretum near Temple Bar Carmarthenshire. The light was striking as were the leaf colours en masse and individually. There were lots of toadstools (e.g. Mycena galericulata) and bracket fungi (e.g. Coriolus versicolor). In spite of the cold, Fresh flies (Sarcophaga carnaria) sunned themselves on tree trunks. There was also lots of feeding by antlered Fallow deer (Cervus dama) stags, especially enjoying chestnuts.

Saturday, 6 November 2010

Seeing the Changes 343

In Penclacwydd, the warmth and damp had brought out what was probably Dog lichen (Peltigera canina).

Monday, 1 November 2010

Birder's Bonus 77

Foraging in the dead thistles along the banks of the Loughor, at Bynea, were mixed flocks of  Long-tailed tits (Aegithalos caudatus); Greenfinch (Carduelis chloris); Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs) and Goldfinch (Carduelis carduelis).

Seeing the Changes 1221

Visited, in Loughor, by a Blood-vein moth ( Timandra griseata ).