Oh, be still my beating heart! What a day. Adders are gorgeous snakes. Unbelievably pretty and exotic looking for what is the most northerly distributed member of the viper family. They are a short, stout snake, maximum length here in the UK is around 80cm (slow worms can be longer!) with a weight of upContinue reading “The Adder (Or European viper) – Vipera berus”
A short write-up/review of my recent visit to Redgrave and Lopham fen on the border of Norfolk and Suffolk. A rare river-valley fen, it is a unique habitat and on of the UK’s very few homes to the great fen raft spider, an awesome semi-aquatic spider. It is also home to a great deal more natural beauty and biodiversity besides and so I heavily recommend a visit.
A look at the complex issue of trophy hunting and conservation – a very wicked problem with no easy solution.
A look at Dungeness Nature Reserve, an amazing area of unparalleled biodiversity in the UK, full of moths, butterflies, bees, wasps, flies and beetles, a unique habitat and ecosystem that begs to be walked around and explored.
A look at the Giant Cheetah, Acinonyx pardinensis – it’s basically a cheetah but bigger (and possibly slower) but it allows us to learn about the role of adaptation as an evolutionary mechanism.
A look at one of the most beautiful coated cats in the world, the ocelot. Small, but not too small, these medium sized cats range from the USA to Argentina, making their living mostly eating small prey and hiding from just about anything else. An adorable cat that was once overhunted for its pelt or to be sold into the pet trade. These things are so damn cute.
A look at the plan by The Aspinall Foundation to re-wild 13 captive, Kentish born elephants into ‘the wild’ in Kenya and why many scientists, conservationists and local community groups think it might not be such a good idea and is, in fact, ego-conservationism being done by someone who might have more financial interest in it than people could be led to believe.
Another in our Celestial Classics series in which we look at aspects of astronomy, usually celestial bodies but also a NASA mission in this case, and the myths that inspired their names. Today is the turn of the Goddess Artemis, the Greek mythological goddess of the hunt, of chastity, of pregnancy and childbirth, of the wilderness, hunting and those aspects of brutality to which humans must accept their place or else be doomed to destroy the very world on which they live. She is my favourite and I won’t hear a word against her!
The sandcat, one of the cutest and most amazing cats on the planet. This small, adorable bundle of fluff has been known to eat desert monitor lizards its own size and venomous snakes – although mostly it eats small rodents, lizards, birds and insects. They rarely drink, using their efficient kidneys to obtain moisture from their prey. They’re just unbelievable, something this cute should not be so tough but they are hard as nails and can teach us a lot about how we should adapt to our environment rather than unsustainably developing techniques and technologies that force our environment to adapt to us.
Be more sandcat.
A look at one of the world’s most interesting reptiles and one of Britains few native reptiles, the slow worm, anguis fragilis – looking at its evolutionary history, remarkable behaviours and why they’re so great.