Sunday, 19 August 2012

Lose Ends

I know that I have been very remiss about posting of late. But I have been busy, also I have not really had that much to say. I am sure that my long suffering reader would have got very bored with me just saying it raining yet again. While the village is over 2000 feet above sea level, I have been expecting the beach to arrive any day now for weeks.

However, the moist weather has been good for amphibians. I have seen far more Frogs and Toads about than I have seen anywhere. Part of that could be that the insects that would normally feed them have been lacking simply as when it is wet and raining the insects can not fly. Therefore the extra moisture makes foraging easier for the frogs and toads.

Another effect of the wet weather has been the number of slugs and snails that I am seeing on the paved path alongside the road when walking between villages. It was while walking there on Saturday morning, I was keeping an eye on the path. While mainly to ensure I did not end up with my shoes coated with slug purée but also because the species mix here is different to the mix where I used to live. While walking I had to double back a couple of steps as I realised that what I had initially registered as another slug was in fact a tiny newt. By tiny I mean the body length was less than an inch about 20mm. It was the slow realisation that the slug had legs that made me realise it was actually a newly emerged newt.

While I was looking at this, a car slowed down and stopped and someone I vaguely knew asked if I was all right. I think it was a look of pity I saw on their face as they drove off. I already knew that my interests and personal attitudes were not shared by some in the village, but I was told I should just step on it and get rid of it.

Perhaps my reader will understand why I have been slow in posting here, when I have attitudes like that to contend with.

On a different topic, the Ring Ouzel. For my American reader, they are migrants from Africa that nest here. They are very similar to a Blackbird, but with a longer body, kind of like a blackbird with a long wheel base. Also the male has a bright white ring around the throat. They are also quite shy, so while distinctive they are not always that easy to see. The name Ouzel comes from old English and means Thrush. Therefore its actually a Ringed Thrush.

On a serious note, the rain that the shifting of the gulf stream has brought to Britain is an effect of the changes that Climate Change will be bringing for many Decades. If the folks in my local pub is anything to go by, I am alone in understanding that the climate is changing. As this is a farming community, I would have thought folks would have been better informed. But all I hear from them are the same old arguments peddled by polluting industries and the Right Wing Press. Yet when I suggest that they only need to look at the weather patterns and the extreme levels of rain, but this doesn't change their minds. As the village is located in the middle of a wind farm, I would have thought that people would at least be more open minded, but the beliefs are entrenched.

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