Friday 26 May 2023

New Geese

 A new addition to the mini-farm this week with the acquisition of 12 geese eggs which we will incubate and if successful give them back to the Little Oak Farmstead in Surrey and maybe keep one here.  

102 moths on the Old Vic year list now. 

There's been a Monty's and Spotted Crake at Otmoor this week and I've already missed Night Heron and Black-winged Stilt there this year. If this keeps up it will loose it's reputation as the rarity black hole of Oxfordshire. Might have to bunk off soon to get over there- stuck to Mondays at the moment as the only flexible spare time I have. 

Geese eggs in the incubator. 
Dark-barred Twist, Syndemis musculana- NFY
An interesting bi-coloured Treble Lines- up to 25 of these a night at the moment 
Brown Rustic- NFY. I also got to around 100 species for the year around the same time last year despite a greater effort this year, although by the sounds of it everyone is experiencing a pretty slow mothing year. If previous years are anything to go by it won't be long until we are getting 100 species a night and could add another 400 species between June and September and many (apart from the winter and early spring specialities) of the species we've recorded in the first 100 will be recorded in that period too. It's hardly worth lighting up until June or rather its crucial to be lighting up as much as possible from now on. 
Most interesting job this week at work (the paid sort) was this job in Tooting and doing my best to talk the directors out of reducing these trees but rather lift them, remove deadwood and cutting back from the property. I often hear people saying the trees are too tall but there's no such thing as a tree that's too tall and it's not the tallest trees that fall down in the storms its the unmanaged ones and reducing trees for light reasons is counter productive usually within 2 years. Reducing trees actually weakens their roots and generates dense (so increases shading problems) and weak regrowth and the pruning cuts can get infected too. Sometimes its necessary to reduce trees to control root growth but like everything in nature- gentle intervention that directs and mimics intricately evolved natural processes (lifting and thinning replicates natural forest processes) is the best approach to management. I literally have no idea why so many people like mutilating everything including their own bodies. Presumably it's just another outcome of a simple economic measure to govern society- destroying and repairing things generates more money in the short term but creates a lot of ugliness and suffering in the process with lots of unaccounted externalities like long term value loss but I still don't understand why there is such an individual appetite for tree owners as it costs more money to the individual in the short term and longer term too. I guess there is a perception that is propagated in the population presumably perpetrated by aggressive sales people in the arboriculture industry where people think that a butchered tree in the garden is some kind of desirable socially conditioned outcome? 

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