Author Archives: Mark

About Mark

Born Bristol, UK Educated: Cleeve House School Bristol, Bristol Grammar School and Downing College Cambridge Ph.D. University of Aberdeen, Winter activity of pipistrelle bats. NERC post-doctoral Research Fellow, Edward Grey Institute, Oxford University Former Conservation Director of the RSPB, 1989-2011

A dull day in Kettering

  A dull day in Kettering (yesterday) was brightened up here, in the School Lane car park, by a flock of Waxwings which spent most of their time in the tops of the two Alders (what fine trees they are) shown here. I knew these birds had been here for a couple of days so […]

Highlander lives – probably.

The disappearance of Hen Harrier ‘Highlander’ off the airwaves may be due to tag failure, though this isn’t yet certain, but a tagged adult female answering to the description of Highlander (brown with a white rump but with an aerial that kinks left) has been spotted in some of her earlier haunts. Good news! I […]

Guest blog – A Question of Importance by Ian Parsons.

  Ian Parsons spent twenty years working as a Ranger with the Forestry Commission, where he not only worked with birds of prey and dormice, but where he developed his passion for trees.  Now a freelance writer, Ian runs his own specialist bird tour company leading tours to Extremadura.  For more details see Ian’s […]

Happy Birthday (tomorrow) Matt Shardlow

Matt Shardlow was on Farming Today this morning (before I was awake for once)(click here, 9 mins in) doing a spirited job. I don’t know the ins and outs of the subject so I can’t tell you that Matt was right, but it would be possible to check.  But I am sure that he sounded […]

Wildlife barbecue

  Here’s an example of wildlife benefitting from moorland burning (which is done to produce unnaturally high densities of Red Grouse for shooting for fun).  Can anyone identify this scorched caterpillar please? The best guesses so far are Northern Eggar (but perhaps Fox Moth). Help me out please if you are an expert on barbecued […]