An English Canal

David Beeson September 2020 The Basingstoke Canal (This is located in Central Hampshire, close to the M3) Serendipity led me to this spot. We had an appointment in the ever-enlarging town of Basingstoke, and, having completed this chore aimed somewhere new. Having arrived at Odiham, a Georgian-styled town, we explored: finding beautifully-designed houses, the villageContinue reading “An English Canal”

Nectar, food of the gods?

Firstly, some questions. Now, no cheating and you really should write down the answers. Question one. (An easy one to give you confidence) Does nectar contain dilute honey? Question two. Are nectar and honey of the same composition, even if honey has less water? Question three. Where is nectar made? (Precision needed here!) Question four.Continue reading “Nectar, food of the gods?”

Children

Freshwater wildlife July 18th 2020 David Beeson As much as many of us enjoy seeing and recording wildlife we need to engage others – especially young people. Big Butterfly Count and RSPB’s Big Garden Birdwatch are following that approach although the oldies tend to dominate. I do not believe the results are taken really seriouslyContinue reading “Children”

The fringes of an ancient English forest

Harewood’s fringe and Longparish in summer – a photo tour David Beeson The woodlands that now form Harewood Forest once spread far and wide. They joined south to the New Forest, west to Great Selwood and north-east to join The Windsor Forest and east to The Wield. So, there’s not much left! Not much IContinue reading “The fringes of an ancient English forest”

Something for the World

Picket Twenty Urban Park’s Wildlife – An introduction to Andover for non-locals! David Beeson July 2020 We all have an in-built tendency to complain and moan. I’m moaning now about people moaning! So, it must be true. Development has, especially in the past, been about destruction; fields into dense housing, hedges torn out, rivers canalised,Continue reading “Something for the World”

The most hated wildflowers?

Trampled, poisoned and mown to the ground. Are these the most hated wildflowers? Grasses and their allies David Beeson Delicately waving in the summer’s breeze, their leaves capturing the sun’s donated energy and using an alchemy to weave it into chemical bonds that trap the Kilojoules (Calories) into a usable form, grasses have a vitalContinue reading “The most hated wildflowers?”

Longparish on the River Test

Longparish Mill or the Hunt for a Golden Bloomed Longhorn Beetle John Solomon What am I doing here? There is a blustery breeze and nobody would describe it as warm, perhaps 19C but not over 20C. I didn’t get rained on driving out but some of the heavier clouds threaten to spit on me beforeContinue reading “Longparish on the River Test”

Sampling and Recording Data

Wildlife recording and sampling David Beeson, June 2020 You are interested in the natural world. You keep your eyes open or go out actively looking for organisms. So, what do we do with what we see? How useful is that data? Here are my thoughts on wildlife data and an encouragement for us all toContinue reading “Sampling and Recording Data”

Edge of the A303, part 2

The UK has left the odds and sods spots for nature. We should be ashamed. Yes, France, Italy, Spain and the USA have some great locations to view wildspaces and the natural inhabitants that occur there. For example, the limestone meadows of the Dordogne, the Italian Dolomites with their iconic mammals, Grazelema and the lynxContinue reading “Edge of the A303, part 2”

Like Southern England 200 years ago

David Beeson 31st May 2020 Salisbury Plain To the west of Andover, the north of Salisbury and south of the M4 is Salisbury Plain. Worldwide this region is known for the enigmatic Stonehenge, Woodhenge and the other world-quality archaeological sites. They themselves merit a long journey, especially if you take the area seriously i.e. understandContinue reading “Like Southern England 200 years ago”

Foreign Travel – Wiltshire! Sidbury Hill Fort near Tidworth.

Sidbury Hill 6th May, 2020. David Beeson and John Solomon David Flora Sidbury Hill Fort is across the Hampshire county boundary and is located in Wiltshire, just west of Tidworth. It is mainly Iron Age in construction but earlier settlement remains have been found. If you visit, you’ll encounter two substantial ditches and the fortContinue reading “Foreign Travel – Wiltshire! Sidbury Hill Fort near Tidworth.”