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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 12th, 2010, 8:20 am 
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Jo UK wrote:
The Camberwell Beauty is not a constant resident here, Liis, merely a visitor in some years

http://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/species. ... ell+Beauty

But yes, that name seems to identify the butterfly.

So no need of an established "common" name in Britain?
They were wonderful.
Strangely enough it is not a migrant in Sweden or Estonia. No obvious reason why it hasn't colonised Britain: it doesn't seem to have very exclusive food or living requirements, and the winter weather is as wet in for instance Skåne in southern Sweden.
Migrating butterflies: how can these fragile, very non-aerodynamically shaped creatures travel very long distances, even given wind transport? But I have seen swallowtails (Papilio machaon) flying against winds, and not at low speed either. It was a hot day and on a very rocky island out in the sea, though; it may have been that they also used small thermal air movements that were invisible to us.

(LK Migrating butterflies : the title should of course have been "The Admiral and the Painted Lady" :innocent: Why didn't I !! ... after all the hours of waiting for buses at Trafalgar Square ...)


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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 13th, 2010, 3:29 am 
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Liis wrote:
Jo UK wrote:
The Camberwell Beauty is not a constant resident here, Liis, merely a visitor in some years

(LK Migrating butterflies : the title should of course have been "The Admiral and the Painted Lady" :innocent: Why didn't I !! ... after all the hours of waiting for buses at Trafalgar Square ...)

and not one bus from there would take you to Camberwell. :mrgreen:

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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 14th, 2010, 9:10 am 
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macdoum wrote:
Liis wrote:
Jo UK wrote:
The Camberwell Beauty is not a constant resident here, Liis, merely a visitor in some years

(LK Migrating butterflies : the title should of course have been "The Admiral and the Painted Lady" :innocent: Why didn't I !! ... after all the hours of waiting for buses at Trafalgar Square ...)

and not one bus from there would take you to Camberwell. :mrgreen:

Nelson Column was the one secure landmark in an enormous city when I was first let loose on my own in London.
The lady, Emma, lady Hamilton, had a spectacular career to say the least. I had forgotten, really ... She would easily outdo any modern jet-setter's scandal headlines. (Move over, Paris H. & co.!)
Not to stray too far from Looduskalender's homelands, the admiral, Horatio (Lord N.), fought in the Battle of the Baltic at Copenhagen. Poem HERE for poetry-minded, with short historic introduction at end.
Nice to know that the Camberwell Beauty is named for a place and not another scandalous beauty. Unconfirmed sources say that the original Camberwell Beauties may have arrived in UK with a timber shipment from Scandinavia.


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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 17th, 2010, 11:03 am 
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Today's main page article is about somewhat larger nuisances than MacDoums Aoutants: vipers.
Seeing to our Biblical history and cultural inheritance, I am happy to report that at the stone wall around the churchyard at Salem church, just south of Stockholm, is a notice to the effect that visitors should kindly not disturb the vipers living in the wall.
Snakes, the Garden of Eden and that apple are maybe forgiven ...

There are all black vipers with no zig-zag pattern, and all black grass snakes with no yellow ear spots. The advice for telling the two apart is a little like that for hares (fold ears over nose and measure) or bats (check teeth): check size and shape of head scales carefully. :mrgreen:


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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 17th, 2010, 11:45 pm 
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In UK, we are taught to notice the V on the head, and the zig-zag pattern down the body - that is an adder and is poisonous.

Grandfathers dog died of an adder bite. Poor Suzy :cry:


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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 18th, 2010, 12:21 am 
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:shock: Salem church.. :innocent: is that where the witches came from ?
Oh dear, no wonder the vipers are there, to protect.. 8-)

Jo, sorry about Suzy.. :cry: that must be" a one in a million chance.. :slap: (malchance)

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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 18th, 2010, 9:41 am 
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Adder or viper? For once, it seems not to be a US-UK issue!

Jo, Suzy must really have been unlucky! Dogs and cats mostly survive bites even in the nose area - but they may be quicker in deflecting "full" bites than we are.

The zig-zag is what everybody is taught to know vipers/adders by. But there are the all black ones, with no pattern whatsoever. They occur in my country place area - as do all-black grass snakes (Natrix natrix). Actually "my" local grass snakes are an intricate collection of all-black to pale grey and muddy brownish to a clear olive green.

The Salem witches are firmly US, possibly original roots in UK. The Swedish Salem - with 12th century church - was once named Slem, it is said, meaning evil, nasty, slimy. Inhabitants protested and took/got the more pleasing Salem.


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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 18th, 2010, 10:39 am 
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Here we only have garter snakes and ... something else, oh yes gopher snakes, both no danger at all. Sometimes we would stop the car and chase the snakes off the road.
But at my aunts house (the one with all the beastly ticks) there are quite a few rattlesnakes and so she taught her dogs to be very afraid of any slithery sounds in the grass or wheat. I do not think she ever lost a dog to snake bite.


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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 19th, 2010, 9:00 am 
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I have only seen adders (vipers) comparatively few times, but as a child I was always scared of them, and we were taught to be particularly careful in sunny, stony places, and to stomp and walk swishing a long stick to scare them off.
One summer we borrowed a summer house, on a small hillock between two slowly reed-choking small lakes. The paths to the lakes went partly across rather soggy cow pastures and were lined with high tussocks of grass. And on every second or third of them a viper, beautifully zig-zagged, used to lie curled up, basking in the sun.
The owner had a wall in the barn lined with specmens in glass jars with spirits ...

That should have been grass snake country, but i can't remember seeing any.
And it was very long ago, so it was probably not illegal to kill or injure snakes then as it is today.


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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 19th, 2010, 11:32 pm 
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I see the article on hedgehogs today.
Would you believe we had a 'rescue team' out today when our neighbour found a hedgehog trying in vain to get out of one of his (fish) pools.
The poor animal had obviously been there for a long time. Hubby got it out and they laid him on the lawn in the sun. He was still breathing and hubby rushed home for cat-food (they love that) and we left the hedgehog to recover. After about an hour he recovered enough to move into the bushes.
We will see tomorrow if he has gone on his way. Our cats have probably eaten the food.. :mrgreen: if he hasn't.!
This is the second year in a row that its happened. The two men are studying a grill method to put over the pool. (about time too). Last year one drowned and one recovered.
Before that we had asked all around for people to stop putting those blue granules to kill snails. We found one in the St. John's Worth bed..dead and :cry: six little babies huddled together. We took them to an animal shelter but they all died from suckling mom hedgehog's contaminated milk.
If you want to get rid of snails..put an empty yougurt pot into the ground,fill two-thirds with beer....snails love beer.. un fortunately ..they drown.. :whistling:
Sorry,its the only way I know to get rid of snails.. unless you throw them into the neighbour's garden. !! :rolleyes:
AND,last word,please always rake over your pile of dead leaves before you burn them.

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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 20th, 2010, 7:50 am 
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Hedgehogs:
Lucky you, Macdoum! it is years since I saw one. That was - of all places - in a patch of grass outside the IKEA store in one of those huge shopping centres. Couldn't take it away or with me, since there were lots of people around and moving or taking care of wild animals privately is in principle illegal here.

Snails & slugs:
Sad but useful to hear that some anti-snail preparations really are poisonous (probably the metaldhyde, "mesurol", variety?). People tend to pooh-pooh risks and import illegally.
Here the allowed iron phosphate-based brands are coloured blue-green? Should be no more dangerous than rusty iron, contain less than 0,1 % iron, a little something to attract the slugs, and 99% filler (starch etc.). Slugs are hesitant, birds love them, my economy doesn't.
Sweden (Scandinavia? don't know about Norway & Finland) has the Spanish slug, Arion lusitanicus, since the 1970ies-1980ies: reddish-brown, about 10-14 cm long, taken as prey by absolutely nobody. Unlucky people can catch 400-500 and more of them in one garden on one night's slug hunt.
The beer trap - unless swimming pool sized - is not really an alternative for them ...


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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 20th, 2010, 8:05 am 
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I read the hedgehog story and mentioned it in the Oregon Seasons thread because I think they are rather similar to my possums and I have always wanted to see one.

I have hardly ever had any trouble with slugs (maybe all the possums?) This year my parents resorted to lots of beer traps. I gather that food grade (and the food grade part is apparently important and increases the cost some) diatomaceous earth used rather liberally when it is not damp -- so the pool is OUT -- is very effective against slugs and ants and things, but is safe for us and pets and so presumably possums and hedgehogs.


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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 20th, 2010, 8:53 am 
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On the separate topic of pesticides.

I loaded Sam with Advantage today - (Bayer's anti flea cat treatment- I don't know if it goes by other names elsewhere) -- he is a flea magnet and although the fleas do not bug him, one flea on little Ms Small sends her into fits. Its active ingredient is imidacloprid, which apparently is terribly hard on Bees. I think I read this is thought to be the result of treating seeds -- sunflower seeds and maybe others -- not flea treatment on cats, but still I wonder. (Wikipedia seems to confirm my recollection). The program to encourage bees suggested planting sunflowers so it would seem sunflowers are quite important to bees. Has anyone heard of pet anti-flea treatment resulting in wider ranging problems?


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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 20th, 2010, 9:33 am 
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alice44 wrote:
I read the hedgehog story and mentioned it in the Oregon Seasons thread because I think they are rather similar to my possums and I have always wanted to see one.

Alice, ironically hedgehogs are one of the most flea- and bug-ridden creatures ever! :innocent: I think a scientist counted nearly 100 species once. And they are not all species-bound ...

Definitely no native Swedish bird, animal, ... eats the Spanish slugs, except that they themselves practise cannibalism. Hedgehogs don't. There are occasional reports of one blackbird or another pecking at a cadaver, but it doesn't seem to spread. People buy Muscovy ducks (Cairina moschata) to eat these slugs, but by no means all individuals do, and they too can wreak havoc on a garden.

In places the Spanish slugs have been so many that ensilage for animals has become risky because of the rotting slug proteins. There have been reports lately of the Spaniards found in Estonia, curious that they have been avoided for so long.

Climate changes: this summer with the dry, hot spell we could see why the Spanish slug isn't considered such a pest in its homeland. A comparatively small - seen as a whole - weather difference, but I have for instance only seen 10 at most in all, where I used to get 100-200 on a 2-hour evening safari.


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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 20th, 2010, 11:14 am 
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Is it possible that we call Spanish Slugs, European Red slugs (I need to recheck the Latin name) Arion vulgaris, Arion rufusL Nope they do not seem to have the same Latin names -- except that wikipedia says that Arion rufus var is a synonym for Arion vulgaris.

Liis I see what you mean about Latin names they are not nearly trust worthy enough!
http://oregonstate.edu/dept/nurspest/Eu ... edslug.htm
This site says we have 10 kinds of pest slugs in Oregon and all but one are imports

These look just like the slugs I find on occasion and they are Arion vulgaris
Image


But mostly we just call them all slugs -- except Banana Slugs but they live in the forest.
Image

Some of the pictures at wikipedia showed them as yellow but this is more common.

I think our garter and gopher snakes eat slugs. Now I wonder, if they are all imports, maybe some native creatures don't eat them, but then the possums are also imports -- they have been expanding their range. I am less certain that possums eat slugs, but slugs are what we have so I think they must. I have never seen a snail in my yard -- or anywhere in Corvallis.


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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 20th, 2010, 12:09 pm 
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It is said that no one except limnological experts can identify a Spanish slug for sure in some cases (but the birds etc seem to do so, without effort!).
They are very special: extremely tough/well-muscled/stringy and with extremely much and tough, clingy slime. A car can slither on a road with enough of them. Truly no animals eat them. Not even half-cat sized rats touch the cadavers.
Many areas - including the botanical garden of Stockholm - have of course survived long infestations and still have plants growing. But they can destroy all newly germinated greenery in a garden in a few nights, likewise certain favourite plants.


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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 21st, 2010, 2:58 am 
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alice44 wrote:
On the separate topic of pesticides.

I loaded Sam with Advantage today - (Bayer's anti flea cat treatment- I don't know if it goes by other names elsewhere) -- he is a flea magnet and although the fleas do not bug him, one flea on little Ms Small sends her into fits. Its active ingredient is imidacloprid, which apparently is terribly hard on Bees. I think I read this is thought to be the result of treating seeds -- sunflower seeds and maybe others -- not flea treatment on cats, but still I wonder. (Wikipedia seems to confirm my recollection). The program to encourage bees suggested planting sunflowers so it would seem sunflowers are quite important to bees. Has anyone heard of pet anti-flea treatment resulting in wider ranging problems?

Alice we use Spot-on (Frontline by Merial) only mentions danger to aquatic life-forms. An application every month.
And (for one cat that has to go to the vet's assistant for application..he's so stubborn :mrgreen: claws all to the fro... he goes crazy if he is restrained even for a moment.. :slap: ) we use Cyclio by Virbac that lasts 3 months.
Frontline is mostly Friponil. Cyclio is Pyriproxyfene (special precautions for the person administering it and not to be administered to sick or convalesent animals)
Those are drops we put between the shoulders of the cat,after parting the hair.
And do not handle the animal for 24hrs. and keep it in from the rain or sprinkler for the same time. :shock:
These products are not the ideal but if you want to keep the cat and the house flea-free.. :unsure: ..we haven't found a better solution and these drops (unidoses) are doing the job.
They are expensive as opposed to flea collars..which we found completely useless.

Liis,yes hedgehogs are 'alive' with fleas... millons of them( well nearly) :D

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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 21st, 2010, 7:51 am 
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I chose Advantage over Frontline because of the dispensers, it is easier for me to apply to their shoulders (my first cat lay down in my bed and apparently rubbed the stuff off her shoulders onto the bedding, so I had to wash the everything so now I make them stay outside for the whole day when I dose them) -- Although the dispenser is nicer I have to buy Advantage in two sizes since one is for cats under 9 pounds and one for over 9 pounds. I think Frontline battles ticks, but we do not have them (and I thought well that is a toxin I do not need), but now I do wonder if Frontline might be a better choice.


Liis, given what happened to my socks when I stepped on a slug that had slimed its way into my house, I do not want to meet a slimier or tougher kind of slug. I actually threw the socks away because they would not come clean -- it was horrible. There was a yellowish stain on my foot for days...

I was introduced to a Mountain Beaver once and told that they have just one flea but it is the biggest flea in the world. As the animal was in the back room in a cage, when it left I swept and swept worrying about fleas.
Mountain Beaver from Wikipedia
The Mountain Beaver (Aplodontia rufa) is the most primitive extant rodent. Not to be confused with the North American beaver, Castor canadensis, or its relative the Eurasian beaver, Castor fiber, it has several common names including Aplodontia, Boomer, Ground Bear, and Giant Mole.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mountain_Beaver


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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 21st, 2010, 8:37 am 
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New story

We know from watching the eagle nest that although the birds may have been safe from human hunters the eagles have done a little hunting.

I suppose the swans are mostly rather large for the eagles by now though.

And now I think hunting season has begun, I wonder how that effects the eagles.


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 Post subject: Re: Ideas from the Front Page
PostPosted: August 22nd, 2010, 8:40 am 
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alice44 wrote:
New story
---------------------- And now I think hunting season has begun, I wonder how that effects the eagles.

The WTE nest area is mostly nature protection lands, it seems. But shooting sounds carry very far around waters.

Another, thorny and tangled matter: Blackberries. This particular variety, R. nessensis, is evidently named for Loch Ness, of Nessie the Lake Monster fame. Doctoral theses have been written on the species, subspecies, varieties and relationships of wild blackberries, let alone the cultured - and not seldom garden escape - varieties.
It is THE English wild fruit for me. Do people still go out picking blackberries in UK? US?
(turned the TV on yesterday, British cooking programme, first thing shown blackberries and blackberry jelly).


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