Author Archives: Justin Anthony Groves

About Justin Anthony Groves

As a student of Ecology and Conservation at Reading University i am very interested many other insect groups, botany and the interaction in nature. Over a number of blogs I hope to pass my knowledge to others but also gain from the many other interesting posts.

The Hornet Hoverfly- Volucella zonaria

There is no need to be alarmed the Hornet Hoverfly (Volucella zonaria) is a harmless species. Although I will admit, in its outwards appearance, if you have never seen one before or happen to see it out of the corner of your eye, … Continue reading

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The Joy of Botany

There is nothing better than the great outdoors for a day of vegetation surveying. Vegetation surveying can help track environmental change, and can form an integral part of the biodiversity assessment of a site. In addition, the surveyor can make predictions regarding … Continue reading

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The Lichen Symbiosis Part 4

Lichens are fundamental in the development of many ecosystems, and in some areas can provide food for some relatively large organisms. They are often intrinsically linked with primary succession, being the pioneering life forms that can create soil, by actively degrading rock, and releasing the minerals … Continue reading

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The Lichen Symbiosis Part 3

Lichen Reproduction This is no simple matter, only the fungus of the lichen reproduces sexually. Lichens have a number of ways to spread throughout the environment, both sexually and non-sexually. The sexual stage is also complicated by the fact the … Continue reading

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The Stags are Back in Town!

The Stag Beetle (Lucanus cervus) is the largest beetle found in the UK and can be up to 75 mm long, with the ones I have observed in Reading being approximately 55mm, but still an impressive sight! (Figure 1) Reading at … Continue reading

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What’s up with the Rainfall?

This blog is my personal examination of the 43 year trends for rainfall on Whiteknights Campus, from 1968-2011 based on our local met station data. There have to my surprise been some interesting changes, contrary to the expected rainfall trends for … Continue reading

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Whiteknights Temperatures – Climate change

Over the past few days I have been analysing the data collected on Whiteknights campus at the meterological station for both temperature and rainfall for the past 43 years. This is a large  set of data, covering a reasonable length of time, showing … Continue reading

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A Splash of Shade, for a Speckled Butterfly

As we steadily edge into Autumn, the main butterfly you are likely to see on Whiteknights Campus is the Speckled Wood (Pararge aegeria). Its third peak of emergence is approximately now, around the last week of August and the first two weeks of September. The … Continue reading

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Harris Garden Moth Trap Session

Hi all Last night I carried out a quick moth trap in the Harris Gardens using a mercury vapour lap and white sheet, conditions were not ideal, due to clear skies and rapidly dropping temperatures, but I did get and … Continue reading

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Buried by invertebrates!

Hello budding entomologists this blog is about the pitfalls (no pun intended) of invertebrates trapping and surveying. More specifically, I am talking about the phylum Arthropoda and not other phyla, such as Mollusca and Annelida. I am secondly avoiding the subject of Mollusca, as after a weekend of … Continue reading

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