Home-improvers

“A single family of beavers removed high levels of sediment, nitrogen and phosphorus from water that flowed through a 2.5 hectare enclosure in Devon. … The dams had trapped more than 100 tonnes of sediment, 70 per cent of which was soil, which had eroded from ‘intensively managed grassland’ fields upstream.” https://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/2018/05/09/beavers-reduce-river-pollution-building-dams-study-shows/

“The UK nuclear industry is also grappling with spiralling decommissioning costs, with the head of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority this week suggesting leaving behind ‘industrial clutter in a few places’ as a way of saving money – and Government has agreed, issuing a consultation on lowering standards of decommissioning.” https://unearthed.greenpeace.org/2018/05/09/government-says-it-could-put-nuclear-waste-dump-under-national-parks/

Someone, somewhere in the UK government, is pondering whether to grant (once native before being hunted to extinction by us) beavers ‘resident’ status in England on condition they sort our nuclear mess.

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Unrequited

“The first time in 40 years that a gannet had flown in to roost but, instead of bringing a partner, Nigel quickly became infatuated with one of the 80 decoys designed to lure the real thing to the island.
So taken was he with his concrete love that he built it a nest out of seaweed and sticks, and was seen by volunteers apparently trying to woo it.” https://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/101073714/the-wrong-ending-nigel-the-lonely-gannet-found-dead-beside-his-concrete-love

Relationship success needs more than love, and something concrete isn’t enough either.

Wasted

“The world’s most widely used insecticide may cause migrating songbirds to lose their sense of direction and suffer drastic weight loss, according to new research.” https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/nov/29/common-pesticide-can-make-migrating-birds-lose-their-way-research-shows

Scientists are close to linking this effect to recent behaviour in the UK government cabinet.

Dolphlirt

“The complex and strange behaviour includes posing with head and tail lifted from the water in what had been described as a banana position. Some males will also balance a sea sponge on their foreheads to attract females.” http://uk.whales.org/news/2017/06/dolphins-pose-and-flirt-to-get-partner

Sponge-bob boomerman.

Zoobesity

“We are a nation of couch potatoes, lacking the will and the strength to turn around the obesity tanker. …
While seeking to minimise the barriers that prevent healthy behaviours [in humans], we should make sure that the design of new environments is taken into account.
A good model would be to look at how zoos are designed. Before a zoo is built, it is common practice for zoologists, biologists, animal psychologists, nutritionists, architects, designers and landscape architects to work closely together to create an environment that optimises the living conditions for the animals. …
Ironically, we do not seem to make the same demands when a town, neighbourhood or workplace environment for humans is planned and designed.” https://theconversation.com/learning-from-zoos-how-our-environment-can-influence-our-health-77063

Urban planning must urgently focus on creating spaces suitable for lifetime incarceration that remove the last vestiges of free will.

Alleged engagement with Badgers

“Dr Paul Monaghan (Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross) (SNP)
He is highlighting some alleged facts in relation to the engagement that badgers have with cattle. I would like to suggest that there is absolutely no evidence to substantiate that view whatsoever.

Geoffrey Clifton-Brown (The Cotswolds) (Con)
I simply say to the hon. Gentleman, who is an intelligent chap, that every bit of logic points to the fact that there must be a link. If badgers have TB and cattle have TB—I do not think this island is alone; this takes place in the rest of the world —any scientific hypothesis would assume there is a link. It is not credible for him to suggest otherwise.” https://goo.gl/QNjbae

Assumption, the watchword of logicians.

From the Badger culling debate at UK parliament on 27 March.
Transcript at https://hansard.parliament.uk/Commons/2017-03-27/debates/7EE168FA-D5CD-41B5-9563-E801D4777EE3/BadgerCulling.
Video at http://parliamentlive.tv/Event/Index/94880530-c845-4ce1-99df-b464223f225e

Bogged down in Badgers

“Geoffrey Clifton-Brown (The Cotswolds) (Con)
I commend my hon. Friend for putting some of the facts about wildlife on the record. He is right about the reduction in some of our bird and mammal species, such as the hedgehog.

Dr Paul Monaghan (Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross) (SNP)
Will the hon. Gentleman be kind enough to cite the source of the evidence he just supported?

Geoffrey Clifton-Brown
Well, the source is evident to any countryman out there. There has been a rapid decline in hedgehogs, and we know perfectly well that badgers eat hedgehogs’ young, wild birds and birds’ nests. That, however, is not the subject of the debate, and I do not want to get drawn on that red herring.” https://goo.gl/LYqGfR

Herring and hedgehogs should not be confused, although both are threatened most from the actions of…humans. However herring are considered the most sustainable fish to eat.

Rather than spell out the evident source of these wildlife facts, the sort of ‘countrymen out there’ referred to by Mr Clifton-Brown seem rather busy damming, diverting or dredging all evident sources.

From the Badger culling debate at UK parliament on 27 March.
Transcript at https://hansard.parliament.uk/Commons/2017-03-27/debates/7EE168FA-D5CD-41B5-9563-E801D4777EE3/BadgerCulling.
Video at http://parliamentlive.tv/Event/Index/94880530-c845-4ce1-99df-b464223f225e