A species not seen for decades has been seen again

Ancient woodlands are irreplaceable. They're a theme emphasised by The Woodland Trust and they’re one of the reasons I got interested in science. Those gnarled old trees, those mosses, those lichens! And today I see that there’s another reason to love ancient woodlands. A species not seen for decades has been seen again.

After all the weird weather we’ve been having (the Jet Stream’s fault, we hear) and all the talk of climate change (which is for real: I’m a scientist and I trust my colleagues when they reach a consensus) I wonder whether any ecologists have suggested what brought this spider back. I’ll ask around in the Faculty. Though I must admit, it’s such a tiny spider and looks so commonplace, I’m sure that I’m not the only person who could see one and notice nothing.

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About argylesock

I wrote a PhD about veterinary parasitology so that's the starting point for this blog. But I'm now branching out into other areas of biology and into popular science writing. I'll write here about science that happens in landscapes, particularly farmland, and about science involving interspecific interactions. Datasets and statistics get my attention. Exactly where this blog will lead? That's a journey that I'm on and I hope you'll come with me.
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6 Responses to A species not seen for decades has been seen again

  1. petrel41 says:

    Hi, thinks for your link! All the best for your blog 🙂

  2. Its good to see recovery of species. It may be down to better forest management, and, as you said it may have been missed before, either because of the scope of previous surveys, or the timing of them.
    It does seem that there is a change in the last few years in regard to woodland management, as well as in other areas (I am aware of several projects that have been put forward to restore ancient wetlands), and this will of course take some time to pay off, lets hope these changes continue.

    • argylesock says:

      How interesting. What changes have been made in the management of those habitats?

      There certainly was scope for improvement. About 20 years ago, soon after my first MSc, I worked for an environmental consultancy firm and it was heartbreaking. The projects that landed on my desk included one to make a windy British seaside town resemble the Riviera, one to reconstruct habitats destroyed by gravel extraction, and worst of all, one to reconstruct upland peat bog after 15 years of open-cast mining. Then there were the road-building projects in which it was my role to say that Route A was better than Route B because Route A would carve through only a dozen ancient woodlands. This was a decent, ethical company who employed me, but for me it was like being doused in icy water. I left.

  3. argylesock says:

    Thank you for these links!

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