After Christmas we went out to Evie again to look for shells. I have a bit more idea of what I'm looking for now, and a slowly developing understanding of the difficulty of identification. There are some great resources out there. Some exceptionally high quality information can be found here - https://www.flickr.com/photos/56388191@N08/albums scroll down to the marine animals, the photos are pretty amazing and the information is reliable, accurate and very well researched I would judge.
With a visit to Brough of Birsay I've added another eight species plus two tricky species pairs which are resolveable but I'll need to find fresh animals, and alive for one species pair. The high tides in early spring would seem to be the best opportunity. In the meantime there are plenty of common shells for me to still find. Thanks especially to IS for essential help and much encouragement and advice.
|Team effort on Evie Beach.
|Dosina exoleta (Rayed Artemis) - thanks YS.
Developing a photo technique for the shells has been a bit of a challenge. Best is using the conservatory and placing the shells on slate, in shadow.
|Littorina obtusata/fabialis agg (Flat Periwinkle), very hard to separate, live animals required.
|A selection from Brough of Birsay including a Spotted Cowrie, Grey Top Shells, Blue -rayed Limpets, a Dog Whelk and various bits of sea urchin.
|After Xmas tidying found this fluttering around the other upstairs bedroom.
The unseasonal warmth has taken me out in the dark searching for moths. All Winter Moth records have been obliterated with 83 including the Wee Wood today.
|Winter Moth, female.
|Winter Moth, male.
|Winter Moth, pair in cop.
|Winter Moth, male, wings unfurling.
AL has been keen to try to ring our Bramblings. Unfortunately they can be fickle and the first attempt led to a zero return as they decided to feed half a mile away in the stubble. A bit of cold weather over Xmas tho' and things changed. Thirty or so birds were present and come 27th they were still here.
Clap net in position and Brambling in the trap zone.
Two fires captured 31, 30 new and a control which was one of AL's birds caught in his Finstown garden.
|Team in action, although elder daughter rather lowered the tone by saying "Bitch!" to a 3 female when it gave her a sharp nip.
|4 male tail.
Thanks to AL, we're all hoping for interesting recoveries.
Total new species since Xmas Eve (eight days) - 13.