BTO: Heard an Owl?

Tawny Owl (Howard Stockdale)

The British Trust for Ornithology is asking the great British public to participate in a national study of Tawny Owls and their calling behaviour, by listening out for them this autumn and winter. Tawny Owl populations are thought to be in decline and the species has recently been added to the Amber List of Birds of Conservation Concern.

Hugh Harris: Global seabird conservation: hoisting the mast for hope on a stormy sea

On Monday 3 September 2018 at the Chadwick Lecture Theatre, University of Liverpool, Cleo Small, Head of the BirdLife International Marine Programme was the opening speaker of the three-day 14th International Seabird Group Conference.

Rob Duffy: Notes from the Drought

Little did anyone expect, on May 2nd, that with the mid afternoon temperature at a bracing 12 degrees  and a healthy dollop of some 7.5 mms of rain, we would be soon regarding the latter with some nostalgia and the former as an uncomfortable memory 

Temperatures rose steeply that week up to the torrid Bank Holiday week end, only to plunge down again, to once again rise to the low 20’s by the 19th and here they remained by and large till the end of the month. A trip to Bodnant Gardens, with the Friends of Calderstones Park, on the 25th, witnessed 7mm of rain( fortunately towards the end of the visit), and a couple of days later we heard thunder: The air was coming from a southerly direction.

Dr Phil Smith: Wildlife Notes August 2018

Bishop's Mitre (Dr Phil Smith)

In this driest and hottest summer since 1976, the blessed relief of at least some rain on 12 August days helped to temper the worst effects. However, the damage and costs to the country became increasingly evident, with agriculture reporting production losses of 50% or more. Not to worry, rather than celebrating desperately needed rainfall, the TV weather presenters described the only really wet day during the month (26th) as “Soggy Sunday”!

Freshfield Dune Heath: Rhacognathus punctatus

Rhacognathus punctatus (Dr Phil Smith)

Another interesting discovery at Freshfield by Dr Phil Smith. This Shieldbug (Rhacognathus punctatus the Heather Shieldbug) is otherwise unknown from locations in South Lancashire (VC59). As a whole there are only 200 records for the UK (NBN Atlas 09.08.2018).

The only other records for our area are from Coastal Surveys carried out by the natural history staff at the World Museum Liverpool. This survey produced 4 records of this species. All of them from locations within the same nature reserve and all collected on the 15th July 1997.

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