Gower (Collins New Naturalist Library, Volume 99) by Jonathan Mullard

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By Jonathan Mullard

Maps top seen on a pill. A definitive traditional heritage of the Gower Peninsula, from its history coast and its entice the naturalist, to the geology, geomorphology, conservation and ecological heritage of this varied zone. positioned to the south west of Swansea and sometimes defined as Wales in miniature, Gower Peninsula used to be detailed a space of exceptional average attractiveness (AONB) in might 1956. the world is exclusive by way of the diversity of the habitats and species that happen inside its 188 sq. kms. for that reason, it has a greater variety of conservation designations than virtually wherever else within the united kingdom. The normal historical past of Gower is like such a lot components of the British Isles – inextricably associated with the actions of guy throughout many thousand years. New Naturalist Gower Peninsula makes use of the evolving panorama and the impact that the linked adjustments have had on species and habitats as its center process. It offers an in depth exam of:

* the mixing of the archaeological and old panorama with the common panorama and its linked species
* The geological construction of the peninsula
* Man's effect at the traditional atmosphere over the centuries
* The coast and channel, together with the limestone cliffs, seashores, caves and saltwater marsh
* The environmental influence of the ocean Empress oil catastrophe in 1996, which discharged 72,000 tonnes of oil into the ocean off Gower
* the continued conservation of the world and the contribution that naturalists could make Mullard additionally appears to be like at awesome crops species and the over-wintering fowl populations at the estuary, that are of foreign value.

The end result of years of study and wealthy with the newest info and whole color illustrations, New Naturalist Gower Peninsula is a beneficial resource of data in this varied and engaging zone.

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Additional resources for Gower (Collins New Naturalist Library, Volume 99)

Sample text

Sandbathing and dustbathing have also been observed in Long-eared Owls (Nuijen 1992). These dry baths kill AN OWL’S BODY 45 Peeters-1:v. 6/15/07 9:20 AM Page 46 parasitic arthropods; dust particles destroy the exoskeletons of such pests through friction between the plates of the exoskeleton. The boreal Northern Hawk Owl has been observed bathing in snow (Cade 1952). Parasites Anyone who has handled a wild-caught or road-killed owl is probably familiar with odd looking, very flat bodied flies that scuttle at speed from under the feathers; they may slip back equally fast into their hiding places, or scurry onto the human’s hands or fly off.

An Owl’s Head The enormous-appearing head of an owl looks like it should be full of brains. It is not. The skull is conspicuously broad, providing the large eyes with room to face forward and at the same time widely separating the ears (not to be confused with the ear tufts projecting above the head), which facilitates differential hearing (see “Hearing” section). A thick but light layer of sound-muffling feathers makes an owl’s head appear even larger, particularly in species that have a well-developed facial disk, which, as a structure associated with 12 AN OWL’S BODY Peeters-1:v.

Some species raise small groups of feathers selectively (left, Northern Pygmy-Owl), large feather groups, including parts of the facial disk (center, Northern Saw-whet), or specialized, enlarged feathers arising from the disk (right, Western Screech-Owl). hearing. Tufts are sometimes also called “ears,” as in Long-eared Owl (Asio otus), or “horns,” as in Great Horned Owl (Bubo virginianus); they are neither. Part of the facial disk, but usually distinct from it, are two curved fans, composed of bristlelike feathers (rictal bristles) that project forward and down from below the eyes and partly surround the beak.

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