Posted by Graeme Lyons , Sunday, 18 December 2016 12:05
What a year. I started with the first month in the southern hemisphere, then had possibly the busiest and often most stressful year of my life but I found some great stuff on the way, Including what I think is the highlight of my career so far. As ever, natural history and conservation has been my rock. So, in reverse order...
10. I don't do slugs but back in February I went all the way to Wales to see a whole slimy bunch of them. Here is the Alsatian Semi-slug.
9. I've wanted to see these freaky Tompot Blennies for years and was pleased to find loads off Saltdean in September.
8. It wasn't my first record of this as I had one last year but it was the first for West Sussex and the first for one of our reserves (Levin Down). Here is the awesome Platyrhinus resinosus.
7. Resurveying the ditches at Amberley was great as there was such positive changes. Like this Marsh Cinquefoil appearing in of our ditches after it was cleared.
6. Surveying the Murray Downland Trust's sites with Mike Edwards produced lots of surprises, such as this Villa cingulata at Heyshott Down.
5. I don't often see new longhorn beetles but the beetle season started with a bang with this Mesosa nebulosa found at Sheffield Park on a BMIG meeting by Nathan Clements in April.
4. The repeat of the big farm surveys in 2016 showed one of the farms in East Sussex become internationally significant for arable plants. I stumbled across three species I had never even seen before, like this Stinking Chamomile.
3. New Zealand was an incredible place. Perhaps the best memories are of the amazing seabirds. I'll never forget the first time an albatross flew right over our heads!
2. Sometimes a hunch pays off. An early morning start and we bagged the first records for Columbus Crabs in Sussex off Brighton Beach, all the way from the Sargasso!
1. Do I need to say anything other than CALOSOMA SYCOPHANTA!!!