Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Making the Most of Moorlands - Update

Simpson's Diversity Index with Langholm Higher

Spent a wonderfully wet morning on the moor with 10 students from Langholm Academy Highers. Despite the gloomy weather they completed their fieldwork without a grumble as they examined the richness of the plant life on the moor. Today was the final Biology fieldwork session with Langholm for a while so can I just extend a thank you to Mrs Ginns and all the students I have worked with over the last month or so - it's been a pleasure! Hope to see you all again soon - Rick


Thursday, 22 September 2016

Making the Most of Moorlands Update

Update on the locations of Rowan and Sorrel, two of the tagged Hen Harriers from Langholm Moor. 

The travels of Rowan and Sorrel


Making the Most of Moorlands - Update

More Stream Dipping with S1's

The second group of Langholm S1's completed their Freshwater Sampling session yesterday. Not only did they find Stonefly, Mayfly, Shrimps, Caddis and a host of other wee beasties but one young man managed to capture a Brown Trout which he named Mr Fish-Fin. The group were all returned soggy but safely to the bus while Mr Fish-Fin and the other captives were safely released to swim another day. A great session with a great group! - Rick

Exploring the Tarras

Mr Fish-Fin

The Liberation of Mr Fish-Fin 

Monday, 19 September 2016

Making the Most of Moorlands - Update

Indicator Species with N5's

To follow on from their last Freshwater Sampling session, the N5's spent the morning looking at indicator species in order to assess the health of the River Tarras at Arkleton. They are happy to report that the Tarras is indeed a very clean river with lots of Stonefly and Mayfly nymphs and not a Rat tailed maggot in sight! Good news! - Rick

Thursday, 15 September 2016

Making the Most of Moorlands - Update

Freshwater Sampling - Langholm Academy S1

Spent the morning with a very enthusiastic group of S1's from Langholm Academy. The freshwater sampling session was very successful in that much freshwater was sampled and now the group have a much better insight of how it feels to be a Stonefly nymph! As well as having lots of fun. we discussed how certain species can indicate the health of a river system and covered sampling techniques and an empathetic approach to handling living creatures. The whole group were a pleasure to work with and I'm already looking forward to the next one! - Rick

Examining the contents of  a sample tray.

Monday, 29 August 2016

Making the Most of Moorlands: Update

Freshwater sampling with Langholm N5's


Spent the morning over the back of Tarras working on sampling techniques with Langholm N5's. During the session we found some fantastic examples of Stonefly, caddis and flat bodied nymphs, shrimps, water beetles and even a parasitic Horsehair worm (also known as a Gordian worm). The group were a pleasure to take out and we look forward to their follow-up session next month - Rick

N5's exploring the Tarras
A Stonefly Nymph

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Making the Most of Moorlands: Update

Langholm Harriers Named

Three young harriers have been satellite tagged on Langholm Moor this season. The first two were tagged by the Hawk and Owl Trust and have been named Rowan and Sorrel (male and female respectively). The third youngster, a female tagged by Natural England has been named Tarras by M.E.Pringle of Meikleholm Brae. 25 hen harriers fledged successfully from 7 nests on the moor this season - Rick

Meet Tarras

Grainne, Hattie and Langholm 2016F- 161961 AKA Tarras