Ideas from the Front Page

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alice44
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Re: Ideas from the Front Page

Post by alice44 » August 29th, 2010, 10:14 am

I think there are some bats here that do that -- when they start flying in the evening they circle a couple of times and the fly down to the river for some water and then get to work on the bug hunt.

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Post by Liis » September 6th, 2010, 10:10 am

Mushroom times - the Rõuge Mushroom Week would be marvellous to visit.
Lacking that, Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm had a mushroom exhibition this weekend, about 300 species, they said, and a steady stream of people looking and sniffing at the exhibits. There were even two matsutake mushrooms, Tricholoma matsutake, (said to be worth 800 SwCr per kilo, on export to Japan; if homegrown in Japan, up to 10 000 SwCr/kilo).
Finland used to have certification courses for pickers of mushrooms for the market.

Anyone else who has been to or has a mushroom exhibition nearby?

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Post by Liis » September 9th, 2010, 11:28 am

A gorgeous chanterelle photo in Urmas Tartes's 3rd diary from the Rõuge mushroom week.
Beetles and other insects eat poisonous - to humans - fly agarics, as Urmas Tartes writes, but for some reason chanterelles are left alone. No larvae, grubs, maggots. There aren't too many chnaterelles around in Stockholm this year though.
But it is a real Russula year here, all colours - red, yellow, green, brown ... Only trouble is one can't really tell the edible and non-edible ones apart except by chewing a small bit: nice - OK, bitter - no good. Never badly poisonous though.
And a push for a favourite Looduskalender article - Urmas Tartes's musings last year about red russulas or roses for one's beloved. To be read, enjoyed, and considered...

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Post by Jo UK » September 10th, 2010, 12:26 am

This afternoon, I studied the rowan tree that hangs over a part of my garden. I could see just ONE berry.

http://www.looduskalender.ee/en/node/8231

There seemed to be the usual amount of berries in July, then the number lessened in early August.
and now they have gone. Maybe they fell early - it was a dry summer.

I have masses of tomatoes and they are much sweeter than usual. I have been picking them and eating them as one does with strawberries! From stem to mouth in one ecstatic moment!

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Post by Liis » September 11th, 2010, 1:40 am

Jo UK wrote:This afternoon, I studied the rowan tree that hangs over a part of my garden. I could see just ONE berry.

http://www.looduskalender.ee/en/node/8231

There seemed to be the usual amount of berries in July, then the number lessened in early August.
and now they have gone. Maybe they fell early - it was a dry summer. --------------
There are much fewer than last year around Stockholm too, and patchily, seeing to places and on the trees. Thinking back, it was the same all the way across Sweden to the west coast, actually.
Many rowanberries predicting stormy weather was news to me; many rowanberries, snowy winter (or war) is a common saying.
There was a record amount of them last year. And record snow we did get too ...
The birds left the berries curiously alone, this year fieldfares are chattering in the trees already.
They have totally demolished my apples too; just half apple skins (or whatever you call the empty husk) left on the ground; some hang in the tree - grrrr.
And after 7 years of immunity, a daring soul suddenly discovered that orange-yellow as in sea buckthorn, cultivar Julia, is edible too. And taught the others. I hope it is forgotten next year, but fear it won't be. Birds learnt to eat blackcurrants at the summer house, and never more forgot about it ...

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Post by leonia » September 11th, 2010, 10:15 am

Oops, this article was hard to translate: http://www.looduskalender.ee/en/node/8250
(teadus.ee). :dunno:
Dear Liis, I had problems to understand what should be transformed; but then I understood that Mitšuurin must be an Estonian landscape. :peek:

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Post by Liis » September 11th, 2010, 8:58 pm

leonia wrote:Oops, this article was hard to translate: http://www.looduskalender.ee/en/node/8250
(teadus.ee). :dunno:
Dear Liis, I had problems to understand what should be transformed; but then I understood that Mitšuurin must be an Estonian landscape. :peek:
Yes, wasn't it? One feels dumped in the dark, without the torches too. I suspect Tiit Kändler of physicist leanings. They all seem to love Alice in Wonderland worlds, and excel in clever mischievious multi-layered statements ...

The Mitshurin I have some faint idea about was a Russian botanist (ia apples, actually) and - possibly innocently - made part of the Lysenko belief that genetically governed properties could be directly modified by living enviroment (and that was not by radiation or chemical agents in it)
Don't precisely know where the parallel to the photos is - a seeming but false transformation of reality, dark night to morning/evening?

All who know better, please help out!
Still, beautiful landscape, wasn't it?

PS. The Estonian title was of course also a clever allusion, :cry: Pimedusega löödud fotod = Photos slayed with/in darkness; tried with a half-hearted Dancer in the Dark allusion.

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Post by Liis » September 14th, 2010, 9:08 am

Autumn habits:
The migration of birds (links to current counts here for instance http://www.looduskalender.ee/en/node/8273) have always marked the seasons in the north, and people have always observed them arriving and leaving. What about further southwards? Or other continents - US ?

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Post by leonia » September 14th, 2010, 9:41 pm

Hello Liis,
short time ago I was very astonished to find the following ornithologic web-site from Middle-East: http://www.osme.org/
No walls of any kind between people interested in birds! :chick: :thumbs:
Besides that nearly every European country has pages like the Swedish one, but not always in such a professional outfit. But only the banded and nowadays the transmittered birds are individually recognizable, and there special journey shows new and interesting details.

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Post by Liis » September 16th, 2010, 9:34 am

Nature films
The Matsalu nature film festival will take place this (prolonged) weekend, 15-19 September, with a probably unsurpassed list of nature films of all kinds from all the world, as well as other events.

Here are links** to general information about the festival
http://www.matsalufilm.ee/english/index.html,
the mind-boggling film list http://www.matsalufilm.ee/festival/index_eng.html
And the schedule of screenings (in case you find a "must see" absolute favourite) http://www.matsalufilm.ee/festival/ajakava_eng.html
And the photo programme: exhibitions and workshops: http://www.matsalufilm.ee/festival/foto_eng.html

To that – imagine it all taking place in a manor house in a small community, Lihula (population just under 1600). The 2005 festival had 7000 visitors. And it is on the border of Matsalu National Park, of migrating bird fame …


**Sorry, can’t manage a translation of the LK main page articles in time for enthusiasts abroad to get their transport tickets and pack the rucksacks.

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Post by Liis » September 22nd, 2010, 1:08 pm

Fly agarics http://www.looduskalender.ee/en/node/8320:
Really a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde double nature mushroom: pretty children's story-book illustration, and nastily poisonous and used for all kinds of sinister purposes.
I remember my grandmother frying it in butter and then adding some cream … and dishing it up for the flies, to kill them. It looked and smelled delicious, and I was very envious.

In the lecture by Peeter Laurits (link at end of article above) the author tells about his own experiences of the mushroom. And of various ways of preparing it … It has been said that the famous Viking “berserk rage” was induced by eating fly agaric preparations.

OT (Old things / Other things) - the Nabala karst area exploitation http://www.looduskalender.ee/en/node/7680 has been put on hold, waiting for results of further investigations, Ministry of the Environment information HERE (in English)

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Post by leonia » September 23rd, 2010, 10:44 pm

An addition for the mushroom times: mushroom pic from the last two days trip along parts of the Danube. This mushroom on a fallen tree I saw in the alluvial forest near the mouth of the Isar river (it's no high-quality-picture because I just made it with the cam of my mobile phone).

Image

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Post by alice44 » September 24th, 2010, 9:11 am

I've been seeing lots of mushrooms in my yard.

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Post by macdoum » September 25th, 2010, 2:15 am

Liis wrote:Fly agarics http://www.looduskalender.ee/en/node/8320:
Really a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde double nature mushroom: pretty children's story-book illustration, and nastily poisonous and used for all kinds of sinister purposes.
I remember my grandmother frying it in butter and then adding some cream … and dishing it up for the flies, to kill them. It looked and smelled delicious, and I was very envious. (quote)
macdoum
What a waste of butter.. :D :puzzled: I did not manage to seperate this correctly.


OT (Old things / Other things) - the Nabala karst area exploitation http://www.looduskalender.ee/en/node/7680 has been put on hold, waiting for results of further investigations, Ministry of the Environment information HERE (in English)
I am very happy that project has been stopped for now. Hopefully it will be stopped altogether.

Alice,here too we have mushrooms seeminly springing-up almost overnight. :puzzled:
Carmel a member of SHOW .. I hope you love birds too. Its economical. It saves going to heaven.
Emily Dickinson

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Post by Liis » October 8th, 2010, 12:14 pm

About the time for berries that still lasts http://www.looduskalender.ee/en/node/8444 - has anyone tried the Guelder rose berry tea? I did last year. There wasn't much taste, but I didn't know how to prepare it. - BTW, Fleur - Guelder, in Guelder rose, is from a district in the Netherlands.

Other berry news
The season for serious berrypicking is over in Sweden. (Cranberries aren't much used, sloeberries only grow patchily). Groups of pickers from Indonesia, Vietnam ... went back home, very unhappy. An annual problem. They are expected to pick 50-90 kilos of cowberries, or 30-50 of bilberries, or 20 of cloudberries per day :shock: . Costs for travel and lodgings mostly devour any money they might make. The big berry-handling companies hire them in. Must be a weird experience, to be dumped in the middle of a Nordic forest ... although maybe less so now, in the days of Internet and videos, than earlier.

Meanwhile Swedish institute for food and biotechnology announce that they, with industrial partners, step into the competition to produce various bilberry extracts. Most of the bilberry harvest obviously goes into making bilberry pills, a great item in health industry.

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Post by Liis » October 12th, 2010, 4:56 pm

Just curiosity - did anyone catch a falling star in the weekend http://www.looduskalender.ee/node/8464? - not asking if you wished anything!

And with all the migrating geese: how many, today, even know of Selma Lagerlöf's tale of Nils from Västra Vemmenhög (quite near to where greater spotted eagle Tõnn stayed one of his last nights in Sweden)?
Nils was turned into a pixie (? "pyssling") and flew on the back of the greylag goose Akka on the flock's journey to Lapland. But he didn't go south with them in autumn; he was delivered at home again when they passed the village. Selma Lagerlöf received the Nobel Prize in literature, although probably not for "Nils Holgerson's underbara resa genom Sverige".

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Post by Liis » October 19th, 2010, 1:10 am

No snow in Stockholm yet, but yesterday ice stayed on water pudddles all day.
For some reason blackbirds and fieldfares (and maybe other of their thrush relatives) go berserk on apples this year. Usually they seem to peck at them mostly to get at the seeds. This year beautiful large apples lie on the ground, hollowed out to bare skins. Every apple has at least a tasting peck or two already hanging in the tree.
No jays around yet (http://www.looduskalender.ee/en/node/8543); some people say they like to be fed cooked potatoes.

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Post by Jo UK » October 24th, 2010, 11:15 pm

Remembering last winter's hardship for Estonian swans, I was pleased to see this good article on LK front page, about when to feed birds, and more important, when NOT to feed them.

http://www.looduskalender.ee/en/node/8582

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Post by Liis » October 24th, 2010, 11:19 pm

Front page article about bears in Alutaguse and elsewhere: a quick translation of the bear, boars and racccoon dogs story that was referred to in the end (http://www.360.ee/loodus/alutaguse-karu ... rikud.html). Alutaguse is in north-eastern Estonia.

Story author: Bert Rähni, Alutaguse nature tours guide
For the pictures see the Estonian original.

"We got a call: much noise and goings-on at our bear hide. So we went there on Thursday.
After five in the evening we sat in the shed and stared steadily out of the window, nobody was to be seen. It was seven already, not a single animal around. A raccoon dog came up, seemed very nervous and disappeared. So a bear was in the neighbourhood.
Just after eight he arrived, large and dark.
(Image 1)
Busied himself for a while, then threw himself flat on his belly.
(Image 2)
Opened the mouth wide and started shoveling in grain.
(Image 3)
Disappeared from time to time but was soon back again. While the bear was away raccoon dogs paid a quick visit.
(Image 4)
After that the bear disappeared for some time. And sleep came too and we went to bed. At about 4 I woke up and looked out. A couple of raccoon dogs were there. Suddenly they fled. A few minutes later several large animals emerged from the shrubs; a female bear with her cubs! I thought – but no, the boar flock had arrived on their nightly roamings..
(Image 5)
The boars were in sight for about one hour. But they too kept their snouts steadily up and from time to time rushed crashing into the bushes on a warning signal from the sow, then back again. At one time there were about ten boars: sows, young pigs and piglets. After about an hour they left. The raccoon dogs who had observed the boars’ meal from aside again rushed at the grain. I went to bed.
At 7 Triinu’s mobile rings its wake-up signal. We get up and the first thought is to start packing, after this noise all animals must be gone. Just to make sure I looked out: there the “old man” lies in the middle of the open space, paws thrown out, probably asleep. I grab for the camera, standby but unused during the whole night. Blast, no focus, still too dark. Luckily the bear doesn’t think of leaving. It lifts its head, looks around, munches some grain and goes to sleep again. At last there is enough light and I can focus the camera. Just at the right moment too, for soon the large, brown being calmly rises and takes a dignified leave. It is 7.40 am: enough for today.

While there have been outcries from Tartu and Pärnu counties about the large number of bears and demands for higher hunting limits, then at Alutaguse we are used to bears. It seems to be true of our boars and raccoon dogs too. The bear was there nearly the whole night but they still managed to get their grain ration. When it comes to more hunting then let us hope it will be where bears really are a problem.
"

More about Alutaguse http://www.estonica.org/en/Nature/Aluta ... e_systems/

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Post by Jo UK » October 24th, 2010, 11:19 pm

Another LK item, this time about bears, reminds me of a Postimees article describing how bears are at a wild boar feeding site! Maybe not quite "Our" webcam site, but close.
Video too.
With thanks to LIis for the translation.

http://www.tartupostimees.ee/?id=329065


http://www.tartupostimees.ee/?id=329065
Honeylovers occupied boar site
(74)
20.10.2010 08:38
Vilja Kohler, reporter
Kommenteeri | Prindi
Hunters in Puhja parish noticed more bears than usual last year, and this year they are even more numerous. However, according to official data the number of bears in Estonia is unchanged as is the number of hunting permits.
The first honeypaws appeared at the boar feeding site of Nasja village, in Puhja, last autumn greatly famished. This year they are everyday gatecrashers. ”The bears have taken over the Nasja feeding place totally, the boars have just been driven off”, says Juhan-Johhen Ross, hunter in the Puhja hunting association.

The Puhja hunters have seen 11 bears for sure this year. The Nasja feeding site is visited by one female bear with four cubs and one with two cubs. Their nightly doings have been videofilmed by Ross together with hunting mate Erkki Liiv.

«You can set the clock by the bears”, the hunter joked. Several nights in a row the teddies arrived at the feeding site at 22.50 and left at 5.50. Sometimes they got tired, stretched out on the ground and had a rest.

More bears

The second boar feeding site of the Puhja hunters is visited by a big male bear and two adult bears moving in company. ”There may be even more bears”, Juhan Ross noted. He explained that the Puhja area is an ideal place for bears: the large carnivores find food there in the bogs, fields, apple orchards.

«That bears live deep in big forests is a myth”, Juhan Ross adds. ”They rather live in copses with quite sparse trees. A human doesn’t even know that a bear may be his neighbour.” The Nasja feeding site is only about a hundred meters away from Juhan Ross’s home. And the daring bears have not only eaten the boars’ food but also the peace of mind of the hunters’ dogs.

«It is crystal clear that there are more bears”, the hunter assures. The same opinion is held by Jaak Volmer, leader of the Tartu hunting association. eelt on Tartu jahindusklubi juht Jaak Volmer. The Puhja hunters have shot a bear three years in a row which shows that there are plenty of bears in the area. Another sign are elk calves in suitable size for bear food, that the hunters have only rarely seen this year.

The Ministry of Environment however has maintained during the last few years that more than 700 bears live in Estonia. This year as in the preceding years Estonain hunters may shoot 60 bears during the bear hunt period that lasts from the beginning of August to the end of October.
«The breeding potential of bears isn’t great, their number won’t increase explosively as that of wolves”, Egon Niittee, the chief specialist of the Forestry department of the Minstry of the Environment explained.

The bears are counted on the basis of information on their doings collected from hunters, which is carefully analysed by specialists. «I don’t think that shooting of more bears will be allowed next year,”, Niittee noted. ”Of course bears have to smell gunpowder sometimes so that they won’t become dangerous to humans. But the hunting level will rather stay the same.»

Bear hunt at an end

In Tartu county this year hunters were allowed to shoot 4 bears, in Jõgeva county 9, and in both counties the bear hunt has finished. In Tartu county bears were felled by members of the Meeksi, Vahelaane, Puhja and Peipsiääre hunting associations. The bears shot were young animals weighing less than 100 kilos.

In Jõgeva county bears were shot in nearly all districts. No big animals were trapped before the guns this year, the shot bears were of medium size.

In the opinion of hunter Ross Government should, when the number of bears increases,quickly react by an increased number of hunting permits. Mr. Volmer too let understand that in Tartu county hunters might have more permits.

«Well, damage caused by wolf, lynx or bear are compensated by the government”, Volmer explained. ”But if a bear slays elk calves in the forest the hunters won’t be exempt from taxes for the hunting area. Nature takes its due it is said. But actually the fact is that nature’s own self regulation no longer works in a world turned upside down by humans”.

The Puhja beekeepers haven’t had much problems with bears this year; neither has Volmer heard of any bears on plundering tours into beekeeping premises.

The bears have however left their tracks in the Puhja wheat fields. ”When a bear goed into a field he tramples all the crop”, Ross tells us. Not only that – as he eats the grainthe bear sits down and tramples even more of the corn. On top of that the bears often pulls out the straws with their roots. ”If many bears visit a field for any length of time then it results in a thoroughly destroyed field”, Ross added.
The Minsitry of Environment in 2008 paid 242 099 Estoian Crowns to beekeepers for damage done by bears.

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