Arthur Colley’s diary goes missing

Photoed by me this afternoon in Warwick Way:

November 4th was quite a while back, so maybe it’s all been sorted by now. Hope so. But if not, sounds like he needs the help of somebody younger, with social media expertise. I googled “Arthur Colley lost diary” and got lots about another Arthur who lost a diary, but nothing involving any Arthur Colley.

Photoers in October 2014

The majority of them being men.

Do you think that my only real interest in photoing photoers is that it is an excuse to photo ladies adopting pretty poses? That’s definitely part of it. As I’ve said several times before, someone should do a ballet based on digital photoers. But me not allowing recognisable faces makes it look more of a bodily obsession than it really is. Basically, I think the entire phenomenon of mass digital photography is a fascinating moment in social and communicational history, and one that has made a lot of people, me definitely included, very happy. And photoing happy, absorbed people is fun.

Which means that photoing men is fun too:

I think there are more men featured in this photo-clutch partly because the weather, that day in October, was rather cold. When it gets colder, women’s clothing gets less interesting and men’s clothing gets more interesting, converging on a single style based on keeping out the cold and not caring about style so much. In plain English: men tend to put on interesting coats and jackets and, above all (in both senses) hats; women tend towards covering up both themselves and their best outfits. (With women’s outfits, less is often more!)

Also, in photo 8, there’s a monkey wearing only shorts.

Creatures hitting the news in the USA

I’m not just talking about the hero dog who helped to catch an austere religious scholar, whose austere religious scholarship inspired him also to become a rapist and a torturer.

I’m also talking about goats:

A hungry herd of 500 goats has helped save the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library from the California wildfires.

In May, the library hired the goats to clear flammable scrub surrounding the complex as a preventative measure.

The goats ate the brush, creating a fire break that slowed the flames and gave firefighters extra time to react.

Okay, the goats didn’t exactly put the fire out. That was done by firefighters. But, the goats did help.

This next titbit is a bit stale, from two months ago, but I am still interested, because it concerns a bridge:

Engineers in southern California are hard at work designing the biggest wildlife corridor in the world, to extend over US Highway 101 to the north-west of Los Angeles.

The corridor will connect different parts of the Santa Monica Mountain chain, which is crucial to the future of mountain lions – but it will help other species as well. The $87m bridge has entered its final design phase and is on track to open in 2023.

Other Californian creature news involved voracious purple sea urchins:

Tens of millions of voracious purple sea urchins that have already chomped their way through towering underwater kelp forests in California are spreading north to Oregon, sending the delicate marine ecosystem off the shore into such disarray that other critical species are starving to death.

Meanwhile in Colorado, some 66-million-year-old fossils have been discovered. I’m guessing something threw their delicate ecosystem into disarray.

The delicate publication process for this posting was also thrown into disarray, by me pushing the “Publish” button last night, at a time when I should merely have been pressing “Save Draft”. Sorry about that.

Black bird on street lamp

Yesterday was my day for finally admitted that Summer has, for a while now, been well and truly over. I wore socks and shoes to go out, for the first time (and then socks in bed). I didn’t wonder whether I should go out with a cardigan of some sort, I just went out with a cardigan of some sort, on. And, I installed my annual winter-months double glazing, which I do with bubble wrap and masking tape.

Before I did this latter project, I noticed a photogenic circumstance to be seen through my still easily-openable living room window. This:

Yes, a quite big black bird, on a street lamp. (And indeed, looking very autumnal and post-summery.)

I like London’s street lamps. They are very variable, often rather ornate in the fake-antique style, done with more than half an eye towards impressing tourists, especially in the centre of London. And if it is tourist-driven, this habit has spread to other non-touristy areas such as the one where I live. This habit being one which, like I say, I like.

And I like this bird. It is definitely a black bird. But is it a blackbird? I’m guessing: not. Too big, and with a front end (bill?) that is way too big. Is it a crow? A jackdaw? Or some other brand of bird unknown to me? Any birdophiles reading this are respectfully requested to supply guidance.

Tardy tardigrade posting

Friday is my day for Other creatures postings, and you could hardly get more othery than this:

So, I did a posting about this very othery creature, which is called a “tardigrade”, and I thought I had posted it. On August 16th. But unfortunately, I had only got to the stage of finishing the posting. I neglected to push that vital final button, the one that says “Publish”. With the result that on August 16th there was nothing here. And I only just realised this. This is the one thing I don’t entirely like about this new blog software of mine. It can be hard to see the difference between a posting that’s all ready to go, and a posting that has, so to speak, gone; between a mere “draft” and an actual published posting.

I have now corrected this dreadful circumstance, and have inserted the completed but hitherto unposted tardigrade posting where it should have been all along. Read what I originally said, and quoted someone else saying, about this bizarre creature here, along with a couple of links to further information about it.

Mother Nature’s a bitch

Here is one of the Highly Commended (Plants and Fungi) photos in this year’s Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition, photoed by Real Photographer Frank Deschandol:

On a night-time fieldtrip in the Peruvian Amazon rainforest, Frank spotted this bizarre-looking weevil clinging to a fern stem. Its glazed eyes showed it was dead, and the three antennae-like projections growing out of its thorax were the ripe fruiting bodies of a ‘zombie’ fungus.

Spreading inside the weevil while it was alive, the parasitic fungus had taken control of its muscles and compelled it to climb. Fuelled by the weevil’s insides, the fungus then started to grow fruiting bodies topped by capsules that would release a multitude of tiny spores to infect new prey. Similar fungi are known to parasitize other insects.

Gruesome.

I made this photo 1000 pixels across, as is my wont. This made the up-and-down pixel count … 666. Very appropriate.

Pause over

I am happy to report that the transmigration referred to earlier has now, it would seem, happened. Because, I am now allowed to put stuff up here again.

The pause lasted longer (longer enough to break my rule here about something-every-day-however-insignificant) than had been hoped. Such pauses usually do, in my experience. But it would appear that Civilisation managed to stagger along yesterday in its usual imperfect manner, despite having had no input into into it from BMNB. Now, normal service resumes.

Hope for more stuff here today, if only to make up for yesterday’s silence. But do not assume it.

The other good news is that there was recently a comment here, from “Fred Z” about his preference for watching dogs trying to get big sticks through smaller gaps over the process described in this video, and this comment did not disappear. Comments here are welcome, but rare, so I am glad about this. Fred Z says that such video-caninery is the same but better. I think Fred Z is wrong on both counts, but that’s not the point. I rejoice that Fred Z’s mistaken opinions are still here, for all here to read and to correct.