Good wheatear news from Texel island


This is a northern wheatear video.

Translated from Ecomare museum on Texel island in the Netherlands:

29-09-14

In the Eierland Dunes on Texel this year, more than twice as many territories of northern wheatears have been counted than in other years: 26! Last year about 12 were found in the same area. Bird counters assume that each territory represents a nest. 26 wheatear territories is very good news, because this bird has had hard times in recent years. Their numbers have declined sharply in most parts of the Netherlands. Only between Callantsoog and Terschelling things are not so bad.

Shrew and vole research on Texel island


This video says about itself:

Alien Invader: Greater White-toothed Shrew in Ireland

10 May 2009

This is the Greater White-toothed Shrew, an invasive alien species to Ireland.

It was first recorded in this country when skulls of this beast were found in regurgitated Barn Owl pellets in County Tipperary in the winter of 2007/2008. It is a native of the European Continent and North Africa. It has not yet been proven how this species came to be here, though it may have first arrived in 2001.

The arrival of this shrew is only the third accidental mammalian introduction event to Ireland in the last 60 years: Bank Voles from Germany came into Kerry in heavy equipment imported into the country by Siemens when they built the Ardnacrusha Hydroelectric power station on the River Shannon in the 1930s, though their presence was not noticed until August 1964; in 1951 commercial farming of American Mink began in Ireland and escaped animals managed to establish themselves in the wild. Both have used water-courses to spread across the country, and while the vole appears to have been a harmless introduction, the mink is a nuisance for fisheries and can be a problem for rare ground nesting waterbirds and people who keep poultry.

This toothy little fella was trapped for filming for a wildlife programme on invasive species in Ireland (broadcast on TG4 in late 2008). He was placed in this terrarium for filming purposes on the edge of the County Tipperary wood where he was trapped, and I slotted in beside the cameraman to take these shots, which admittedly are not great. The shrew was released immediately afterwards and no harm came to it.

Ecomare museum on Texel in the Netherlands reports today about small mammals research in the Krimbos woodland in the north of the island.

The greater white-toothed shrew was found there.

So were three vole species: tundra vole; bank vole; and field vole.

See also here.

Baby nursehound shark born


Baby nursehound shark

This is a photo of a baby nursehound shark; hatched recently from an egg in the aquarium of Ecomare museum on Texel island in the Netherlands (with a stickleback in the background of the photo).

Young Sandwich terns with rings seen again


This video from the Netherlands is called Sandwich Tern chick preening. There are also some black-headed gulls in the video.

Ecomare museum on Texel island in the Netherlands reports today about Sandwich terns on the island.

This year, 7600 Sandwich tern couples nested in Utopia nature reserve, near the Wadden Sea.

88 chicks in these nests were ringed this year. 35 of those young terns were seen again later. Two of them in France, one in England.

Most chicks were seen again in Utopia. 11 had flown away further. Six went to the Slufter on Texel. One to the Maasvlakte near Rotterdam. Two to De Putten nature reserve in Noord-Holland province. These two De Putten youngsters continued to France (Le Havre region).

Unfortunately, one chick (the smallest one of all) was found dead.

Wall lizard on Texel island


This is a wall lizard video from Italy.

Translated from Ecomare museum on Texel island in the Netherlands:

Lizard discovered on Texel – 26-08-14

There are no lizards on Texel. So, Texel man Hans van Garderen looked surprised when he found one in his home in Den Burg town. The animal was missing part of his tail, but looked healthy overall. He sent pictures of his special discovery to Ecomare biologist Pierre Bonnet. To find out which type it was precisely, Bonnet asked experts in the field of reptiles. According to RAVON staff member Annemarie van Diepenbeek it’s probably a young wall lizard.

Stony environment

Wall lizards are found in rocky environments in France and neighboring countries in southern Europe. In the Netherlands this species lives in one place, in Maastricht. Texel is not a suitable habitat for a wall lizard. They love a stony environment and not all that sand! Sand lizards do live on Terschelling and Vlieland, and on Terschelling, also the viviparous lizard. These species would also be able to live on Texel, but then you would expect them in the dunes, not in a house in Den Burg!

Alone or more of them

To find out whether this is a lone adventurer or whether there might be a population living on the island, Pierre advised Hans to also look in the garden. Among the stones he turned were there plenty of smooth newts, but no lizards. How the wall lizard came to Den Burg is unknown. It was probably taken along by people accidentally. Maybe it hitched a ride from a French campsite.

Three bug species discovered, new for Texel island


This video is called True Bugs.

Today, warden Erik van der Spek, on Texel island in the Netherlands, writes about bugs.

Recently, biologists discovered three species, new for the island, of this insect group, .

Temnostehus pusillus was found in the Bollekamer nature reserve, in the western dunes.

Rhacognathus punctatus, the heather bug, was discovered in the Horspolder, in the south of Texel.

Cyphostethus tristriatus, juniper shield bug, was found on a juniper shrub in the sand dunes.

This brings the number of Texel bug species to 313; about half of all bug species in the whole Netherlands.

Bugs photos: here.

Barnacles found on Texel island


This video from South Africa is called Learn about Barnacles and Crabs with marine biologist Judy Mann.

Ecomare museum on Texel island in the Netherlands reports about barnacles.

After storm from the south-west on 17 and 18 August 2014, many barnacles beached on Texel.

Not only Lepas anatifera, smooth gooseneck barnacle, a common species, but also two less common species: Lepas pectinata and buoy barnacle.