Blog

Mon 24th May 2010

Posted on May 24, 2010 at 5:00 PM

birds : Perhaps the adrenaline of the Bee-eater blew a few of my brain cells as I felt pretty rotten over the weekend and barely left the house, especially as Rosie was working. So I didn't go for the Nightingale that was singing at Pleinmont, despite needing for Guernsey. I did pop into the Talbot this morning briefly to look for Golden Oriole but there was no sign. So no birds of note, but here's another photo from last weekend.

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Whitethroat, Pleinmont

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moths : I also didn't get the trap out despite the improvement in temperatures, but I did have a new Lep species for the garden when a Small Copper landed briefly on the grass. I have noticed in the last few days that there seems to be a heck of a lot of small moths around and insects in general as I walk around the island. Perhaps the very dry Spring has meant a bumper crop. Today I called in at Pulias on the way home and was very pleased to spot a Thrift Clearwing. These tiny day-flying species are not too uncommon in the right places places but very difficult to see.

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nonsense : Rosie got quite a shock yesterday when she went to pick up a flower pot and this beast slid out!

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Slow worm

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This Slow worm lives under the decking and we see it from time to time - although we presume it's the same one, I have no idea of the habits of Slow worms, and perhaps we are seeing different ones eachtime.

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This weekend I finished reading a book about the "rediscovery" of the Ivory-billed Woodpecker in America. Just from reading that book you would think that it was cut and dry, and would have no idea that at the moment there is controversy whether the species has been refound or not. I think that the IBWO "searchers" (as they seem to call themselves) really shot themselves in the foot when they released the famous "Luneau" video which was supposed to be conclusive proof that the species exists. Even with my limited experience of large North American woodpeckers, it seems so so unlikely that the video shows an Ivory-bill - there is just not enough white on the bird. There are pages and pages of analysis on the internet of this video, but it is pointless analysing such a crappy quality film - some of the 'best' frames are shown below! See movie at this site.

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Look! It's an extinct bird!!

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I'm not saying it doesn't exist - and there are actually more promising videos around of different sightings -, its just that if the AOU and Cornell  and the searchers etc really believe that this fuzzy blur proves it's existance, then its difficult to believe anything they say on the subject. It's worth noting that practically all sightings have been from Ornithologists, Conservationists or 'Woodsmen' rather than proper 'Birders' - there's no way this record would have got past the BBRC (......mind you. the "Slender-billed" Curlew did...........).

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Speaking of which, there was a good Radio 4 program on the "10 Rare Men" of the BBRC - listen on the iPlayer - programme was on Saturday.

Categories: 2010 Spring