Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Western Scrub-Jay along the River Ayr

I’ve just acquired a copy of a rather nice laminated leaflet describing the wildlife to be found along the River Ayr in southwest Scotland. It is produced by the Outdoor Access Unit at East Ayrshire Council and mentions Catrine Voes, East Ayrshire’s first Local Nature Reserve (shock – ground-breaking stuff!). Now, I’ve been along the River Ayr many times but have yet to observe a Western Scrub-Jay (Aphelocoma californica)! Yes, inside is a photograph of this species from the south-western states of the US. In fact, you can even ascribe it to the Pacific race from California. I’m not sure how this Nearctic exotic managed to find its way into the guide but I’m guessing it was inserted by someone googling for 'Jay'. At the foot of the second page is some text instructing the reader that “the welfare of wildlife and its natural habitat must come first and ensure that you leave the environment untouched”. Obviously this does not apply to Moorfield and it’s extirpated Grayling butterflies…

No comments: