There are still more bird nest webcams than the ones about which this blog reported earlier.
It is March, so the webcams for nesting birds in the Netherlands are working again.
This video says about itself:
Up Close: Andrena Vaga Bee Digs an Impressive Hole
2 Feb 2014
Andrena is the largest genus in the family Andrenidae, and is nearly worldwide in distribution, with the notable exceptions of Oceania and South America. With over 1,300 species, it is one of the largest of all bee genera. Species are often brown to black with whitish abdominal hair bands, though other colors are possible, most commonly reddish, but also including metallic blue or green.
Body length commonly ranges between 8 – 17 mm with males smaller and more slender than females, which often show a black triangle (the “pygidial plate”) at the abdominal apex. In temperate areas, Andrena bees (both males and females) emerge from the underground cells where their prepupae spend the winter, when the temperature ranges from about 20°C to 30°C. They mate, and the females then seek sites for their nest burrows, where they construct small cells containing a ball of pollen mixed with nectar, upon which an egg is laid, before each cell is sealed. Andrena usually prefer sandy soils for a nesting substrate, near or under shrubs to be protected from heat and frost.
Andrena females can be readily distinguished from most other small bees by the possession of broad velvety areas in between the compound eyes and the antennal bases, called “facial foveae”. They also tend to have very long scopal hairs on the trochanters of the hind leg.
Some people say spring starts officially on 1 March. Some say 21 March. Astronomers say between 19 and 21 March.
Though it is still winter now according to many viewpoints, mild winter means that in the Netherlands, many birds and insects are unusually early, Vroege Vogels radio said today.
Andrea vaga bees are already flying. So are large earth bumblebee queens.
Some butterfly species fly already: peacock, red admiral, brimstone, small tortoiseshell. Not that surprising for these species, as they winter as adults, and will start flying when temperature allows.
A bit more unusual are other butterfly species which already fly now: small white and speckled wood. These species winter as pupae. Apparently, mild temperatures make for a quicker metamorphosis.
This is a video about a meadow pipit singing in the Netherlands; in September 2013.
Visarend made the video.
Well-known Dutch conservationist Eli Heimans lived 1861-1914.
A primary school teacher, he advocated that during biology lessons, children should experience living animals and plants, in their environments and in classrooms.
Together with his colleague and friend Jac. P. Thijsse, Heimans wrote many pioneering popular books on animals and plants in the Netherlands. Including the first ever Dutch flora book, accessible for non-professionals. Heimans and Thijsse co-founded the Dutch Natural History Society.
Then, Heimans and Thijsse started an organisation aiming at buying the Naardermeer to make it a nature reserve. Their conservation organisation Natuurmonumenten still owns the Naardermeer reserve today. Heimans was not elected to the executive of the new organisation Natuurmonumenten. He suspected that this, and that he did not get a job at a teacher training college, was because of an undercurrent of anti-Semitic opposition to his Jewish ancestry.
Heimans was not only interested in botany and zoology. He also wrote about geology, especially of the Dutch province Limburg. In July 1914, just before World War I started, he went to the Eiffel region in Germany, not far from Limburg. During this geological trip, Eli Heimans suddenly became ill and died.
This year, the centenary of Heimans’ death is commemorated in the Netherlands.
There is a new book about Heimans.
There is a smartphone app, guiding for a nature walk in Limburg where Heimans walked.
In the aquarium of Artis zoo in Amsterdam, the Heimans Diorama was built in 1926. This gives visitors an idea of the dunes of Texel island and the birds living there. Today, it still exists. After Panorama Mesdag in the Hague, it is the second biggest panoramic painting surviving in the Netherlands.
BirdLife’s UK Partner, the RSPB, is launching a new initiative, the RSPB Centre for Conservation Science – which includes an online science hub – dedicated to discovering solutions to 21st century conservation problems, reinforcing the BirdLife Partnership as a world leader in conservation: here.
And there is money for some other things as well.
Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:
New car for king
Wednesday 26 Feb 2014, 12:54 (Update: 26-02-14 , 13:04 )
The magazine Vorsten [Princes] knows that the Audi has been adapted in the Netherlands to the wishes of the king. The car was extended 45 centimeter and equipped with all comforts. There is a fridge, a TV and Wi-Fi on board.
The seats are covered with lambskin, Vorsten writes. The car, just like all other royal court cars, has been painted in a special dark blue colour.
Autoblog.nl knows that the 6,3 liter engine delivers an output of 500 horsepower. According to this blog there is a price tag of over 597,000 euros for the armored car.
Until now, the monarch was transported in a prolonged Volvo S80. That brand has been dominating for the past ten years the car collection of the royal House of Orange. Thus, for Willem-Alexander’s inauguration last year, a whole fleet of that brand was deployed.
This is a video about a European toad in the Netherlands.
EvdBijl made the video.