Archive for July, 2008

British Birds: Some Decline While Others Increase….

July 17, 2008

Nightingale

In an earlier posting we noted that one species (Great Tits) of British birds was coping quite well with alleged climate warming. A report today in The Independent (U.K.) shows that, while many British birds are declining in numbers, others are increasing. Causative factors in decline included intensification of agriculture causing loss of farmland birds such as grey partridge and corn bunting; changing woodland management methods, increased deer populations, predation by grey squirrels, and problems on wintering grounds in Africa of migratory species as causes of declines in woodland birds. (willow tit -77%, wood warbler -67% etc).

Changes in vegetative undergrowth caused by deer browsing is listed as the most likely factor in the decline of woodland birds. The nation is seeing a rapid increase in deer population led by the muntjac, an introduced tropical deer.

The good news, however, is reserved for the so called garden variety birds: many are exhibiting substantial increases in numbers probably due to backyard feeding and warmer winters: (oh, oh there’s that climate warming bugaboo again!) great tit +55%, goldfinch +39%.

Advertisements

River Paddle Floating Meadows: July 12 9 AM

July 6, 2008

Mattabesset and Coginchaug

River Paddle

July 12, 9 a.m.

Last year’s event was great fun!

Departure from Harbor Park at 9 a.m. to catch the end of the flood tide, so that we will be in the Floating Meadows at high tide. Professor Barry Chernoff will offer short talks on river ecology along the way. If you plan to attend and if you wish to be informed in case of cancellation due to weather, email Hall.john.c@sbcglobal.net

Tasteless Exploitation of July Fourth Dept…

July 4, 2008

Ha! The Redcoats were hardly mosquitoes! Actually our founders were the mosquitoes and piss ants that won the day and our freedom.