Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Migration weekend

This weekend is, it seems, migration weekend. On the birding side we have VisMig and on the butterfly /moth side we have BMM (butterfly and moth migration).
VisMig, or Visible Migration, is an increasingly popular aspect of birding where one selects a site and then diligently records all passing migrants. Secretly it has been going on for years but, in more recent times, it has increased its profile. This weekend it is trying to co-ordinate activities, not only across Britain but across Europe, to have an interconnected set of observers recording active migration. There is a very readable article on Birdguides (http://www.birdguides.com/webzine/article.asp?a=1748) and the growing fraternity of VisMig'rs have a website at www.trektellen.org
Some of our most familiar butterflies and moths migrate - red admiral, painted-lady, clouded yellow and hummingbird hawkmoth to name a few. This weekend is the 'peak' for migration and so Butterfly Conservation is asking all that can to get out and record migrating butterflies and moths. In some cases individuals have been marked (the butterfly equivalent of bird ringing) and participants have been requested to look out particularly for these marked individuals. More information can be found at http://www.butterfly-conservation.org/text/987/migration.html

Migrating Tree Sparrows - image from Birdguides article, copyright Clive McKay.

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