Certificate 18

Posted by Graeme Lyons , Thursday, 22 May 2014 18:56

I beat this very cool ladybird off a fallen Scots Pine at Graffham yesterday after a very early start surveying birds and then the deployment of twenty pitfall traps. It's the 18-spotted Ladybird Myrrha octodecimguttata and a species I had never seen before. Superficially, it looks like the Cream-spot Ladybird but the spots themselves are more varied in shape and arrangement than those in that species. Off the same tree I had three more lifers, the common weevils Otiorhynchus singularis and Cimberis attelaboides and the Nb running crab spider, Philodromus collinus. It's all about the fallen pines!

The bird survey was good too, with Woodlark, Hobby, Yellowhammer and Spotted Flycatcher all present.

The pitfall traps are a repeat of traps I ran exactly five years ago and I hope to show some really positive changes due to the management we have carried out there since then. Whilst I was placing the last trap my eye was drawn to an oddly symmetrical shape in the mineral soil. Sitting on the surface was this amazing fossilised sea urchin!

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