Carp and sparrowhawk


Today, to the nature reserve.

At the white storks’ nest, at first both birds on the nest: one sitting, one standing. Later, one sitting, and one looking for food in the meadow. Stil later, both again on the nest, one sitting, one standing. On the bank of the ditch, lesser celandine flowering.

This is a video of a sparrowhawk eating a house sparrow.

In a high tree in the reserve, a bird flies away from an old grey heron nest. However, the bird is not a grey heron, but an Egyptian goose. Has he taken over the nest?

Near the entrance to the castle, an adult carp in the moat.

A chiffchaff singing in a treetop; still leafless at this time of the year. Sounds of nuthatch, green woodpecker, and great spotted woodpecker.

Wood anemone flowering. See also here.

In the meadow: shelducks; grey lag geese; and hares.

A peacock flying past (the butterfly, not the bird).

Above the treetops, a sparrowhawk circling in the air.

Rightist government in Israel


This video is about Israeli Teddy Katz of Gush Shalom – www.gush-shalom.org.

By Bill Van Auken in the USA:

Sworn in Tuesday as prime minister in the most right-wing government in Israel‘s history, Benjamin Netanyahu threatened a military strike against Iran [see also here] and signaled a break with the so-called “two-state solution” to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict backed by Washington.

3 April 2009 – The former chief prosecutor of two United Nations criminal tribunals, Richard J. Goldstone, will lead an investigation into violations of human rights and international law during the recent conflict in the Gaza Strip, the Human Rights Council announced today: here.

SINN Fein president Gerry Adams called on Israel and the Palestinians to negotiate an end to their decades-old conflict during a visit to Gaza on Wednesday: here.

A religious war in Israel’s army: here.

Beetles rediscovered in England after over a century


This video says about itself:

Nighttime infrared video footage of the dung beetle Deltochilum valgum attacking a millipede in the Peruvian rainforest. Ecologically distinct from its co-occurring dung-feeding relatives, this species is a specialized predator of millipedes and the first case of an obligate predatory dung beetle. The beetle kills the millipede by prying apart its segments, often through decapitation, before feeding on its soft inner tissues.

From Wildlife Extra:

Beetles found after going missing for more than 100 years

01/04/2009 12:04:15

Seven rare beetles found on National Trust’s Dunham Park

April 2009. An amazing seven species of beetle have been found at the National Trust’s Dunham Park in Cheshire after last being recorded there more than 100 years ago.

John Hooson, National Trust Nature Conservation Adviser, said: “Dunham is one of the most studied parklands in the UK, making this a very special discovery. These beetles are small and finding so many that haven’t been seen since Queen Victoria was on the throne is remarkable and confirms that this is a special place for wildlife.”

Flat bark beetle & false darkling beetle

Two of the major rediscoveries from the survey were the rare flat bark beetle Pediacus depressus, last recorded here in 1889, and normally found south of the line between the river Severn and the Wash, and the nationally scarce false darkling beetle Abdera quadrifasciata which was last reported at Dunham in 1867 and is at the northern limit of its range. There were also two new discoveries for the site from the survey – the nationally scarce darkling beetle Pseudocistela ceramboides, the furthest north it’s ever been found, and the nationally scarce hister beetle Aeletes atomarius, which hadn’t previously been recorded in the north west of England.

Top site for veteran trees

Dunham Park is one of the top sites in the UK for veteran trees – an old tree that has had time to develop a variety of features such as fungi and sap runs – such as oak and beech which have survived in the park for many centuries.

The long continuity of such veteran trees has made the park an ideal location for wood-decay beetles. Results from this latest survey of the parkland, by expert zoologist Dr Keith Alexander, have confirmed that the park is the fifth richest site for such specialist beetles in the British Isles, supporting national and international rarities.

Renowned beetle habitat

Famed for its diverse variety of wood-decay beetles, searching for them at Dunham Park became popular in the 1860s and the site has been visited by countless experts ever since. Local entomologist Joseph Chappell was the first person who published notes on the rarities found in the parkland.

See also here.