A Couple of Important Nature Links

Links an important petition and an important thunderclap. A couple of other nature related links, a classic nature related meme and some of my own photographs.

INTRODUCTION

A couple of big things to do with nature came to my attention today and I have decided to share them with you. In addition to the two major links there will be some of my own thoughts, a nod in the direction of New Zealand and some appropriate photographs of my own. As you will have noticed by now, the text in this post is green, and that is because it is a post entirely dedicated to nature. Links in the text will in bold and underlined, while images relating to other posts will also be formatted as links.

THOUGHTS ON NATURE

My own interest in the natural world and concern for nature are both lifelong. I literally cannot remember a time when these attributes were not part of me. Although I grew up in London I had a common practically on my doorstep, lots of natural history books, and of course being in London meant I was within easy travelling distance of the museums at South Kensington. In my childhood the Geological and Natural History museums were two separate entities, though they have long since been amalgamated into one museum, the Natural History Museum. Therefore you can imagine my reaction when I saw something on twitter about…

A GCSE IN NATURAL HISTORY

A petition on the official site created for petitions addressed to the UK parliament to create a Natural History GCSE has been launched. This means that it is only open to those among my readers who are UK citizens to sign, which I regret, but you can still view this petition (there is a screenshot below to whet the appetite) even if you are not a UK citizens. UK citizens please sign and share.
NH GCSE

My next major link is to a…

THUNDERCLAP

To be part of a thunderclap you have to be on some form of social media (facebook, twitter or tumblr to be precise). This particular thunderclap is about the importance of pollinators and the fact that scientists have established that birds as well as bees are pesticide victims. If you are able to add your voice to this thunderclap please do so. Below is a screenshot for further clarification.

BJBthunderclap

Yes, this thunderclap is well ahead of target, as it should be, but just as the importance of pollinators cannot be overstated, so this thunderclap cannot ever be said to be over-supported. 

A COUPLE OF FURTHER LINKS

Miles King over at anewnatureblog has today produced a splendid piece titled “Time to rename Defra the Ministry of Agriculture and Fieldsports” in which he reveals the extent to which our government is failing in its duties as regards the environment. Below is a screenshot of the section of the post dealing with the downright dishonourable Andrea Leadsom by way of introduction.

ALfail

Now it is time for…

A NOD TO NEW ZEALAND

Jerry Coyne, author of the books “Why Evolution Is True” and “Faith Versus Fact”, and who also runs a blog named after the first of those books is currently in New Zealand, and it is from there that this wonderful picture (click on it to view it in its original econiche) comes:

It is nearly time for some of my own photos, taken yesterday and today, but for the penultimate section of the post I share once again…

ANNA’S NATURE MEME

This wonderful creation was formed around words that were originally submitted by me as a comment on one of her blog posts.
Nature Meme

PHOTOGRAPHS

birdmootcorvidscysbbirdmootDSCN5745DSCN5746DSCN5750DSCN5751DSCN5756DSCN5759DSCN5763DSCN5771Goose1ducklngs x 5Goose2gull on jettyHGSquirrelStarling in grassbirdmootcorvidscysbDSCN5745DSCN5746DSCN5750DSCN5751DSCN5756DSCN5759DSCN5762DSCN5763DSCN5771DSCN5772ducklngs x 5Goose1Goose2gull on jettySquirrelHGStarling in grass

A Walk and Some Links

A walk in and around King’s Lynn and a number of interesting and important links.

INTRODUCTION

I am making the walk the centrepiece of this post, with some links either side of it, starting with some general links, and then following the walk with some science and nature themed links.

SOME GENERAL LINKS

First up, Heather Hastie has produced this post titled “Betsy Devos Doesn’t Inspire Confidence in the Future of US Education”

From The Mighty comes this piece, titled “17 Things Not to Say to People on the Autism Spectrum” 

Steve Rotheram has put out a call for Jeremy Hunt to end the NHS crisis. The link is here.

Courtesy of Disability News Service, here is an article about how one of  Britain’s biggest bus companies is attempting to weasel out of a supreme court discrimination ruling.

THE WALK

Yesterday was bright and sunny, so I went out for a walk. The sun was shining on to the Lower Purfleet, revealing that the surface still had a thin covering of ice…

lower-purfleet

When posting about a walk in King’s Lynn I always like to showcase at least one of our historic buildings, and today I have this picture showing Hanse House and the Rathskeller with the towers of King’s Lynn Minster in the background:

hanse-house-and-rathskeller

There was nothing else of note until I reached the Nar outfall, where I have often observed cormorants. This time there were no cormorants, but there was a small wading bird which I had not seen before and which consultation of my bird book suggested was a Common Sandpiper…

small-wadersmall-wader4small-wader2small-wader3small-wader5small-wader6

I left the river by way of Hardings Pits, taking a couple of shots (one each way) at that moment.

river1
The view towards town
river2
The view away from town

Crossing the Nar on my towards the parkland I took a picture from the bridge…

nar-bank

Passing through the Vancouver Garden I spied a squirrel. It eluded my first attempt to photograph it, but…

squirrel

I then decided to make it a long walk and headed for Lynn Sport, to then go back into town by way of Bawsey Drain. Along the way I got a shot of the railway station as seen from Tennyson Road level crossing…

station

At Lynnsport I stopped to photograph a decorated signpost…

sign

The Bawsey Drain segment of the walk provided a number of pictures, including a raven and some moorhens…

moorhen2ravenmoorhensbawsey-drain

bawsey-drain-2
Unfortunately Bawsey Drain is used as a dumping ground by people who cannot be bothered to dispose of their rubbish properly.

miaow

While walking a,long John Kennedy Road I took this picture of the back of St Nicholas’ Chapel…

st-nicholas

Right at the end of the walk I spotted a pied wagtail..

long-tailed-tit-2long-tailed-tit

NATURE THEMED LINKS

The first link in this section is to a piece that appeared as part of WEIT’s Hili Dialogue series. The star of the series is a cat, the eponymous Hili, also known as the Princess of Poland. Hili has a staff of two, Andrej and Malgorzata and graciously permits a dog named Cyrus to share in this. The pieces always feature something about that particular date, and apparently yesterday was Penguin Awareness Day. While I do not object to a day being designated Penguin Awareness Day, surely we should be aware of them and the rest of the natural world every day. To read the piece in full, click on the graphic below which is extracted from it:

image002

This leads neatly on to two recent pieces from Anna, the first of which is titled “This can never be wrong”, the ‘this’  being taking care of our planet. The other piece from Anna that I am sharing here is about the Save Trosa Nature campaign.

Rationalising the Universe’s latest offering is about Newton’s Laws of Motion.

WEIT get another mention, for this piece about a new species of moth which has been named after Donald Trump.

I started the ‘general links’ section of this post with a piece by Heather Hastie. I now finish the piece with another piece, the title of which, “Huge Crack in Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica Grows” is sufficient introduction. I ‘pressed’ a link to this yesterday, but it is so important that I choose to share it again.

 

 

 

Of Birds, Local Heritage and Rugby

I will start with the local heritage. I had the opportunity at my aunt’s house yesterday before the rugby started to photograph a modern replica cast iron piece that was made from the original…

Although there were other contenders, so remarkable was yesterday photograph wise this is the feature image.
Although there were other contenders, so remarkable was yesterday photograph wise this is the feature image.

In the first of the rugby matches, England eventually ran out comfortable winners, although Italy scored first through Sergio Parisse and kept things close for about the first hour (and would have been close still had they possessed a number 10 with a functioning boot – whatever other merits he possesses ex-Kiwi Kelly Haimona is a liability in this area) but England, just as Ireland had been last week were too strong for Italy in the end. The second game between Ireland and France was much less of a spectacle. Ireland managed to win, thereby ratcheting up the stakes for the game in two weeks time between Ireland and England. There was one very serious misdemeanour by a French player in that match, when he gave one of the Irish guys a vicious knee in the back. Somewhat surprisingly the referee only deemed this worthy of a yellow and ten minutes in the sin bin. Personally, given how badly the Irishman could be affected by the blow, I think it should have been red, end of the French offender’s participation in the match and indeed of this years Six Nations.

Although it was dark by the time the Rugby ended, I had been out and about earlier in the day and snagged some good pics – I also got one on my home…

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The front of King's Lynn Minster, beautifully lit up.
The front of King’s Lynn Minster, beautifully lit up.

The First Fruits of My New Camera

My new camera was ready for collection today, and since picking it up I have been enjoying myself testing it out. For comparison purposes before going into the main set of pictures here are the images for Lot 723 in our February auction, the last set of pictures I took with the Samsung…

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For the rest: Camera Nova Ipse Loquatur (Let the new camera speak for itself)!

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This panel is quite attractive. Pity about the building it belongs to - £1.2 billion tax dodger B**ts
This panel is quite attractive. Pity about the building it belongs to – £1.2 billion tax dodger B**ts
Effective and appropriate restoration.
Effective and appropriate restoration.
Stage one of sorting out this disaster should involve the use of a wrecking ball!
Stage one of sorting out this disaster should involve the use of a wrecking ball!

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Taking Part in a Research Project

Yesterday I travelled to Norwich to take part in a research project relating to Asperger’s Syndrome/ Autistic Spectrum Conditions. The project, being run by Graham Bradley of UEA, involved three stages: an abbreviated version of the diagnostic test that confirms whether or not one is on the spectrum, then a two part intelligence/ reasoning test, first attempting to define words and then a pattern recognition exercise (I was got by one word, pavid, but as you might expect handled the pattern recognition exercise with considerable ease), the final part of the session being a computer based exercise, again themed on pattern recognition. This last involved identifying the letter H or L according to what came up on the screen. The two fundamental variants: sometimes the key letter was a large letter made up of a collection of smaller (irrelevant) letters organised in appropriate array, and sometimes it was the smaller letters that were key and the large letter they formed that was irrelevant.

Anyone who is able to get to Norwich and interested in taking part in this project can contact Graham Beales. His email address is G.Beales@uea.ac.uk and he can also be contacted on 07851 319347.

I do also have some pictures for you…

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This is a sample of my aunt's knitting skill - these pieces will form a blanket.
This is a sample of my aunt’s knitting skill – these pieces will form a blanket.
Swaffham church on a sunny but cold day
Swaffham church on a sunny but cold day
This is from just beyond Swaffham
This is from just beyond Swaffham
This shot was taken in Hockering.
This shot was taken in Hockering.
The first of the Norwich shots
The first of the Norwich shots

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Full circle - this set of pictures started in King's Lynn and we are back there now with the Christmas lights.
Full circle – this set of pictures started in King’s Lynn and we are back there now with the Christmas lights.

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