Monday, 30 October 2017

Sp. #1007, Bug #30 - Parapiesma quadratum

An orache specialist, so naturally from the fringe of Hopeward Wood/shore where two species grow in a fat line. The species overwinters as an adult so probably there are a lot more of them about right now.

Thursday, 26 October 2017

Mydaea corni, Bathing House Wood water trap

On a sunny day last week I put out a water trap in Bathing House Wood, fully anticipating a number of smaller flies. What I got was a surprise, with a few nice fat Muscoidea including this one - Mydaea corni. It appears to have only been recorded in Fife in 1904 in nearby Aberdour. It's not apparent how pretty it is from the pics really with a black body/yellow scutellum coated with a bronzey dusting that shimmers when you rotate it. Very nice. Water trap specimens always seem to have a different appearance than those caught with a net so I need to improve my re-setting skills.

interesting ovipositor

It appears to have been once thought to be a cow dung species and it seems to be at least in some cases, but the area seems to be short on cow dung community species, certainly compared to my nearby nature reserve. This is a fair remove from the nearest cows.

Monday, 23 October 2017

1000 species breakdown

So after a two week recovery period in Turkey here's a breakdown of how the total was reached. I'll have to think about my favourites later.

It's been fun. Sometimes exciting, sometimes trying. Sometimes amazingly easy, sometimes very difficult. There were plenty surprises and a full quarter of the final tally were species new to me. That might be worth breaking down too.

I'm looking forward to looking at some neglected places and groups to be honest, but it's been a very rewarding exercise. I'll continue to record a few "extra" species for when species on the list prove to be bulls.. erroneous. Now I'm taking it a bit easier birds are starting to finally trickle in, though with winter thrushes being the latest additions maybe that pool is drying up.

Here's how the numbers grew compared with previous annual listing on my local nature reserve

You can see the benefit of working a square close to home/work that's always accessible. The other one is too, to be fair, but I never visited it as consistently.

Here's how the numbers grew by category,

It's not so easy to see how the inverts broke down from this but flies came on strong latterly as moths died away. Moths were severely under-represented really as I only was able to take a serious moth trap on site in the final month. Let's not talk about beetles ... the surge of autumn fungi is pretty obvious though.

The way the numbers moved can be seen reasonably well on here:

Class Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep 23-Oct
Verts 40 54 64 71 73 74 85 92 95 99
Inverts 54 106 148 208 301 365 411 467 499 505
Plants 69 92 104 122 137 147 188 201 203 203
Fungi 65 72 87 93 99 102 119 139 176 181
Algae 8 13 16 17 17 17 17 17 17 17
Total 236 337 419 511 627 705 820 916 990 1005

And the final breakdown of today's tally of 1005 ...

Category Oct-23
alga 17
Protist other 0
slime mould 2
lichen 48
fungus 131
liverwort 5
moss 27
flowering plant 165
conifer 2
fern 4
cnidarian 4
mollusc 33
bryozoan 2
annelid 7
flatworm 1
harvestman 5
pseudoscorpion 1
spider 29
gall mite 0
tick 1
millipede 6
centipede 3
crustacean 15
collembola 13
bristletails 1
odonata 0
dermaptera 1
orthoptera 0
hemiptera 29
coleoptera 58
diptera 154
lep-moth 92
lep-butterfly 9
hymenoptera 34
insect-other 4
tunicate 1
echinoderm 1
invert-other 1
fish 4
reptile 0
amphibian 2
bird 88
mammal 5

Just for luck, some more numbers:
1001 Pyrrhula pyrrhula Bullfinch
1002 Eudasyphora cyanella A muscid fly
1003 Lactarius pubescens A mushroom
1004 Turdus iliacus Redwing
1005 Turdus pilaris Fieldfare

Lactarius pubescens

Winter thrushes

Thursday, 5 October 2017

Fly, fungus. Fungus fly!

Same title, same split. Only this time the fly is a fungus fly. Now I need to finish on a fly fungus!

Cystoderma amianthinum and Keroplatus testaceus. Both lovely. The Cystoderma is common enough but the joy of the Keroplatus was that when we found it on a fungal foray it was a pupa. Unbeknown to us we found a larva at the same time, so now with the larva in alcohol and the pupa bred out I have seen all stages except egg - something that doesn't happen often. NBN doesn't have many dots for the fungus gnat but then that's probably true of most fungus gnats. I'll see what we can make of it as a record.

995 Syrphus torvus A hoverfly
996 Phaonia valida A muscid fly

997 Cystoderma amianthinum A mushroom
998 Keroplatus testaceus A fungus gnat

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Fungus, fly. Fly, fungus. Not like that, like that.

Sorry about the repetitive theme but this is what we're working with now! Maybe another bird will show up at lunchtime today. Why not?

Having found myself briefly locked out as I waited for the missus yesterday night I stumbled into this lovely Lactarius deterrimus on the edge of a garden. It has orange milk, which narrows it down very swiftly!

The fly, Suillia pallida, was only finally sorted out this morning though I had keyed the family and guessed the genus yesterday.

Lactarius deterrimus

Suillia pallida

The creeping count
993 Lactarius deterrimus A milkcap
994 Suillia pallida A fly

Monday, 2 October 2017

992 Greylag Goose

Now that wasn't so hard was it?

Come on Kestrel, Bullfinch, Buzzard ...

In bird ringing there are Constant Effort Sites. But here's a real constant effort site! This year's effort compared with two previous years at my local nature reserve. I would never have expected that.

One at a time please, ladies ...

Creeping slowly forward at one fly per day. Probably means I'll shoot forward as these things go in cycles. I would back finishing on Thursday maybe now though with a meeting of fungus-botherers who may be prepared to bash out some tricky identification with me.

One of my favourite flies was a nice surprise yesterday after sitting on a pin for two days - Phaonia rufiventris (R.populi as was). It's like a P.subventa but with yellow humeri and less acrostichials

Can't say why it appeals to me so much but I added it to the county list a while back from a more interesting forestry and sort of assumed its presence there was why it hadn't been noted before. Anyway, now it's noted from here too.

Yellow humeri. One pre-stu acro (not a pair - just 1!)

The meagre list additions:
989 Ocydromia glabricula A fly
990 Lucilia silvarum A fly
991 Phaonia rufiventris A fly