Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Water and papers!

Happily the water was flowing again by mid-afternoon yesterday. Though Mama and the littlies still decided to go for a swim at the nearby pool instead of a bath. Much more fun (and Kitty and the Mancub could enjoy a plate of Fish and Chips between them AGAIN! Since we had visitors coming over later and thought a more civilised adult only meal would be nice). So water was good, and the washing machine was plumbed in too - we'll see what success we mght have there today! And then I also got the final acceptance of a paper that has been on the go for a very long time now, so that's great too. Hurrah! It's a paper with a figure that should never, ever be published, but they're going to - and in a decent journal too (Ecology for those interested).

It might be the work of a demented spider. Or perhaps a master plan for some strange cat's cradle. But who'd of guessed it really describes the pattern of interactions between bird species on the Peak District?! As always, I'm convinced that once this paper comes out it will completely revolutionise the way we do ecology... If only someone could understand it... Still, it is quite interesting I think - not so much the bird interactions, but we provide a method to help untangle the tangled web that is an ecological community - who interacts with who, and in what direction and how strongly? This sort of thing is essential if we're to try and understand what happens to the whole system if you were to change something - say you target one particular species with a pesticide, might this lead to some currently rather obscure competitor suddely exploding out of control and causing an even greater problem? It might be nice to know this in advance... Anyway, back to the next one, on Tanzanian birds this time...


  1. In a few months time and with a few crayons I think Ben might be able to come up with some pictures like that too. Well done Mr B!

  2. Showing my age here but until I read the text I had presumed it was spirograph ;-)