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Have you seen me 2011
Following the success of the 2010 postcard survey, in 2011 we decided to produce a woodland themed 'Have you seen me postcard' to celebrate the International Year of Forests.
Even though the survey period has ended you can still submit your records. The postcard survey form is available to download (see the link on the right), so if you have seen any of the species featured you can print out the form, fill in the details and then return to the address provided. Alternatively you can email the details of you records to firstname.lastname@example.org
The species we are asking for sightings of are White Admiral (butterfly), Wild Service Tree, Great spotted Woodpecker and Dormouse. Here is some information about these species...
Dormouse: Also known as the Hazel Dormouse, this is the only small mammal in Britain to have a completely furry tail. The fur is golden brown and they have large black eyes. Dormice are nocturnal and prefer deciduous woodland with a good, varied shrub understory and large, overgrown hedgerows. In the spring their diet consists of flowers, honeysuckle and pollen and in the autumn they eat fruits, hazelnuts, and sweet chestnuts, as well as aphids and other small insects. Dormice open hazelnuts by making a round hole in the shell of the nut, leaving clear teeth markings on the outside of the shell whilst the inside has no marks and is very smooth. This is distinctive to Dormice and can be used to infer their presence. During the winter, dormouse hibernate in nests beneath the leaf litter on the woodland floor.
Great Spotted Woodpecker: The preferred habitat is wooded areas, including parks and gardens and they roost on their own in holes in trees. Great Spotted Woodpeckers have a pied plumage and red patch on their vent area and they move in a distinctive jerky fashion. They feed on a variety of foods depending on the season; in the spring and summer it feeds on insects such as ants and the larvae of wood-boring beetles. The Great Spotted Woodpecker will work its way up a tree trunk, sharply tapping it to prise off fragments of bark to access prey from gaps and crevices. In the autumn and winter, the birds may eat fruits, seeds and nuts. Nests are hollowed out 10 to 12ft from the ground in a tree in spring and eggs are usually laid in late May to June.
White Admiral Butterfly: This butterfly has white-banded black wings (the females are slightly browner and larger) with a flight pattern of short periods of wing beats followed by long glides. It is a fairly shade tolerant butterfly, which uses shady woodland and ride edges. It likes mature or neglected woodland where there are sunny glades with patches of brambles. Bramble flowers are often used as a source of nectar for the adults, and it lays its eggs on honeysuckle. Adults emerge in the second half of June.
Wild Service Tree: Part of the rose family, the Wild Service Tree is a broadleaved and deciduous species reaching a height of about 10 to 25m with brown, cracked bark. The leaves are similar to that of maples; they have five lobes and they have a shiny underside with hairs on the veins. In the autumn, the leaves turn coppery-red. They produce clusters of white flowers in late spring and a brown-red fruit in the autumn. The Wild Service Tree is commonly found in ancient woodlands and old hedgerows.
For more information see the Woodland Trust British Trees Guide.
For more information see the People's Trust for Endangered Species website.