Archive for the 'Biodiversity' Category

Food security threatened as pests move poleward with global warming

September 18th, 2013 by University of Exeter

Colorado potato beetles, Leptinotarsa decemlineata, mating on a potato plant in the Netherlands. This important pest of potato crops was introduced to Europe from North America (click image to expand - image ©RLLord)

Colorado potato beetle, Leptinotarsa decemlineata, mating on a potato plant in the Netherlands. This important pest of potato crops was introduced to Europe from North America (click image to expand – image ©RLLord)

A paper ‘Crop pests and pathogens move polewards in a warming world‘ published in the journal Nature Climate Change reveals that global warming is resulting in the spread of crop pests towards the North and South Poles at a rate of nearly 3 km a year.

The research by scientists at the University of Exeter and the University of Oxford, shows a strong relationship between increased global temperatures over the past 50 years and expansion in the range of crop pests. Continue reading

Learn about Guernsey pipistrelle & long-eared bats on 2 August 2013

July 5th, 2013 by RSPB Guernsey Group

(click image to open the PDF file which can be downloaded to your computer)

(click image to open the PDF file which can be downloaded to your computer)

Please join the RSPB Guernsey Group on a bat walk with Pat Costen of La Société Guernesiase beginning at 8.30 pm on 2 August 2013 if you would like to learn more about bats and hopefully see and hear some.

The bat walk begins at La Hure Mare Industrial Estate (Perry’s Guide page 11, G2).

Please park on Estate road with the kind permission of Chris Mallandine and Harvey Smith.

During the walk, a bat may fly close to you and there may be moths and other flying insects around.

Pipistrelle and long-eared bats are interesting mammals and play an important role in the ecosystem.

Please let the RSPB Guernsey Group know if you would like to join the bat walk by sending your name, address and phone number by email [email protected] or by post to:

RSPB Guernsey Group
Mau Cottage
Les Cornus
St Martin GY4 6PZ

Please wear warm clothing and suitable footwear as it could get chilly while we look for bats.

All children must be accompanied by a responsible adult.

 

Marks & Spencer backs call for UK National Bee Action plan

June 27th, 2013 by Friends of the Earth

honey bees on the inner cover of the beehive at Hansard Trust on The Grange (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

honey bees on the inner cover of the beehive at Hansard Trust on The Grange in St Peter Port (click image to expand – ©RLLord)

On 27 June 2013, Marks and Spencer called on the UK Government to create a Bee Action Plan.

The retailer joins businesses such as The Co-operative and B&Q, key scientists, 200 MPs from all parties, and tens of thousands of the British public asking for action on the issue.

The call comes ahead of a summit meeting of key stakeholders on Friday 28 June 2013, at which Environment Minister Lord de Mauley is expected to outline the UK Government’s plans to protect bees from decline.

Friends of the Earth has seen an early draft of the UK Government’s plans, and fears tomorrow’s announced proposals will be too weak.

The environment charity says urgent action is needed to reverse bee decline and protect all kinds of bees, whose numbers have declined dramatically over recent years due to disease, chemicals, loss of habitat, and poor weather. Continue reading

La Societe Guernesiaise presents a talk on ‘Simply Bees’ by Brigit Strawbridge on 9 July 2013

June 19th, 2013 by Events

Brigit Strawbridge (image courtesy of Brigit Strawbridge)

Brigit Strawbridge (image courtesy of Brigit Strawbridge)

Brigit Strawbridge of the TV Series ‘It’s Not Easy Being Green‘ is visiting Guernsey to give a talk about ‘Simply Bees’.

Her talk begins at 7.30 pm on Tuesday 9 July 2013 at the Frossard theatre, Candie Gardens, St Peter Port.

male-solitary-bee-Andrena-nitida-male-Brigit-Strawbridge

A male solitary bee, Andrena-nitida, on a dandelion flower (click image to expand – image courtesy of Brigit Strawbridge)

Brigit Strawbridge will discuss the difference between Continue reading

Green Legacy Guernsey wins main 2013 Conservation Awards prize

June 14th, 2013 by Insurance Corporation Conservation Awards

The Green Legacy Project organised by Nigel Clarke of Queux Patio Plant Centre won the coveted Insurance Corporation Conservation Award for 2013.

In the first five months of 2013, the Green Legacy Project, now in its fourth year, has provided workshops in Green Legacy’s eco garden at Queux Patio Plants to almost 400 school children. The workshops have covered ‘Wiggly Worms’, ‘Nature’s Recyclers’ and ‘How Plants Grow’.

The Green Legacy Project has also organised Council for Learning Outside the Classroom training for Guernsey school teachers on 20 June and 21 June 2013.

The Green Legacy Project gives both social and economic benefits by educating people about Nature and plants.

This long term project received £2,000 from Insurance Corporation to fund its activities. Continue reading

Friends of the Earth concerned about weed killer in peoples’ urine

June 13th, 2013 by Friends of the Earth

Friends of the Earth and GM Freeze have expressed concern that laboratory tests have found traces of the weed killer glyphosate in the bodies of people in Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, France, Georgia, Germany, Hungary, Latvia, Macedonia, Malta, Poland, Spain, Switzerland, the Netherlands and the UK.

Urine tests of 182 volunteers in 18 European countries, found that on average 44% of samples contained traces of glyphosate.

Of the ten samples taken in London in March 2013, seven had weed killer traces.

All the volunteers who gave samples live in cities, and none had handled or used glyphosate products in the run up to the tests.

This is the first time monitoring has been carried out across Europe for the presence of the weed killer in humans.

Glyphosate is one of the most widely-used weed killers in the world, used by farmers, local government and gardeners, as well as sprayed extensively on some genetically modified crops which are then imported into Europe for use as animal Continue reading

Prizes for Insurance Corporation Conservation Awards presented by Deputy Bailiff on 13 June 2013

June 13th, 2013 by Insurance Corporation Conservation Awards

The winners of the Insurance Corporation Conservation Awards will be presented with their prizes by Deputy Bailiff Richard McMahon on Thursday 13 June 2013.

After a successful judging day on 4 June 2013, each winner will be given a cheque from Insurance Corporation to fund their endeavours.

The event, which is in its 23 rd year, is staged to fund projects designed to protect the island’s green spaces and natural habitats.

The winner of the main award will win £2,000 to help fund their projects while the winning school will be awarded £1,000.

A special prize has also been added to the event, which will be announced at the presentation. Continue reading

OECD report on green growth at the heart of development

June 11th, 2013 by Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development

(click on report cover to go to OECD website)

(click on report cover to go to OECD publication webpage)

With 7 billion people in the world today and 9 billion by 2050, we must invest in development that will meet the growing demands for food, water and energy.

The OECD publication Putting Green Growth at the Heart of Development suggests that these investments could define a path for inclusive growth and sustainable development by focusing on people’s needs and prospects while respecting the environment. It also gives examples of developing countries’ successful initiatives to do so.

Highlighting the nature of the challenges and opportunities in this field, Angel Gurría, OECD Secretary General, said “putting green growth at the heart of the development agenda requires real political leadership to instill change at international, national and local levels.”

Our report shows that green growth can offer new opportunities for developing countries,” he said. Continue reading

Leatherback turtle egg found on St Brelade’s Beach in Jersey

June 10th, 2013 by Société Jersiaise Marine Biology Section

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A broken egg found on St Brelade’s beach, Jersey on 6 June 2013 by Mrs. Carolyn Green. The egg was broken by her dog before she could recover it. (click image to expand – image ©Carolyn Green)

On 6 June 2013 the Société Jersiaise Marine Biology Section received an extraordinary report of a sea turtle’s egg having been washed up on St Brelade’s beach, Jersey.

Andy Farmer, a sea turtle expert living in Jersey, looked at the images and spoke with Mrs Carolyn Green who found the egg while walking her dog on the beach.  She kept the broken egg shell.

Mr Farmer said “first impression, I’m pretty sure it’s a leatherback turtle egg, Dermochelys coriacea. From the images and what Mrs Green told me, I would say it is very fresh, only a couple of days old if that.”

“So that only leaves the small conundrum, what is it doing on St Brelade’s beach in Jersey?” Continue reading

CI Co-operative Society Plan Bee launched at Castel Primary School

June 7th, 2013 by The Channel Islands Co-operative Society Limited

Castel Primary School pupils planting wildflower seeds to launch Plan Bee with the Channel Islands Co-operative Society Limited (click image to expand - image courtesy of the Channel Islands Co-operative Society Ltd)

Castel Primary School pupils planted bee friendly wildflower seeds to launch the Channel Islands Co-operative Society Limited Plan Bee (click image to expand – image courtesy of The Channel Islands Co-operative Society Ltd)

The Channel Islands Co-operative Society has launched its Plan Bee project in the Channel Islands at Castel Primary School, following the success of the initiative in 2012.

Colin Macleod, The Channel Islands Co-operative Society’s Chief Executive, and Geraldine Silk, of the Guernsey Bee Keepers’ Association, joined pupils at Castel Primary School to educate them on the plight of the honeybee, and to plant wildflower seeds to encourage bees into the school’s outdoor woodland classroom.

The initiative was set up to help, support and expand the Channel Islands’ struggling bee population. Continue reading