Thursday, March 18, 2010

Mid-March Survival

We now have 17 wild hibernating larvae left, one of which is shrunken
and probably dead. During the first half of March six were lost -
presumably all to bird predation. Five of those were on buds and one in
a fork. It was disappointing to lose one from a fork, a nice grey larva
well tucked in. Some of the surviving larvae have greened up a little
Methinks a change in the weather cannot come soon enough, to give the
birds something else to do, though the predation rate might actually
worsen as April approaches. Also the buds need to swell. Two of my
larva-bearing sallows are silvering up, and one or two others are
thinking about it, but there is basically no sign of spring in the wood
at all. It takes me ages to check them now, after having to remove all
my markers.

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