"Big things come from small beginnings"

Posted by Graeme Lyons , Friday 1 June 2012 15:41

 David, Prometheus.

You may think it foolish of me to quote a film I have not yet seen. I remember feeling this excited about a film once before, way back in 1999. We all remember what happened then. Yeah, Jar Jar Binks or whatever it was called. Enough said.

Anyway, why the quote? I started work early this morning with a bird survey at Butcherlands. I saw Hobby, Cuckoo, Spotted Flycatcher, Turtle Dove and a Marsh Tit feeding young. I then stayed on to continue monitoring regeneration there in a series of circular 300 square-metre plots. Oak is regenerating well, particularly in the field known as Hilland. In one plot I recorded 54 oak seedling and saplings. I was impressed by the diversity too within this field with plenty of Bramble, Field Maple, Hawthorn, Hazel and Blackthorn. I even recorded a few Wild Service Tree seedlings! Not bad for what was an arable field about a decade ago hey? It got me thinking. I wonder if any of the trees I counted or measured will still be around in 500 years time? If we truly create a wood-pasture/parkland like landscape, there is no reason why not. I wonder what human endeavours these trees will pay silent witness to. Maybe we'll get our collective act together by then and be living in some blissful utopia. I bet it's more like Mad Max though.
Anyways, on every gate post at Butcherlands there are a few Marpissa muscosa. I never get tired of these and this was the biggest female I have ever seen!
As was this huge Lackey moth larvae.
Finally, on the way to the corner shop by my house I spotted this Rose Chafer!
Now, I'm off to the cinema. There are few things that get me as excited as natural history but a return to science-fiction after a 30 year break by the director of Alien and Bladerunner is one of them! Oh, yeah I'm still on 3999 too.

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