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No. 54 NEWSLETTER Spring 2003

WEST MIDLANDS BRANCH, BUTTERFLY CONSERVATION

Contents

Chairman’s Notes Front Cover
New Moth Atlas 2
Instructions for contributors 2
Spring/early Summer meeting 3
Birds & Butterflies of Ecuador 20 Sept. to 9 Oct 2003 3
Local Action Dudley MBC, an update 4
AGM minutes 5
Thanks to Transect Walkers 6
Moth Identification Guide—Drab Looper 6
Obituary for Dr. David Barton of Herefordshire 7
Evolution in Action—the new Website 7
Celpha woodiana (Barrett) - a rare and localised insect to look out for 7
Moth Traps on loan 8
Introduction from the Regional Development Officers 8
Account of a trip to Cameroon 9
Annual Review AR1 - AR12
Conservation Corner 12
Butterfly Records 2002 - Some Problems of a Branch Recorder 13
Dates for your Diary - 1 14
Dates for your Diary - 2 14

 

Chairman’s Notes Spring 2003

HAPPY NEW YEAR to all our Branch members – we now have over 500 for the first time.

Regional Officers
I am pleased to report that the position of Regional Officer for the West Midlands and Warwickshire Branches has been filled. The position will be shared between Jenny Joy and Jane Ellis. Many of you will know Jenny who lives in Shropshire and has been actively involved with the Branch for many years. Jane lives in Warwickshire and has previously worked as a Biodiversity Coordinator with Warks. County Council. We look forward to working with them both to further fulfil the conservation objectives of the branches.

Committee Changes
I am very pleased to welcome Nigel Stone to the committee. Nigel will be our “web master” (see separate article in this newsletter) responsible for the branch website. The branch would like to congratulate Neil and Corinna Gregory on the birth of Oliver at the end of last year. We were very pleased to welcome all 3 of them to the AGM in November when Oliver was only a few weeks old. Is Oliver the youngest ever attendee at an AGM? However as a consequence of the arrival of Oliver, Corinna is unable to continue as branch secretary and we now seek a new secretary. Are there any volunteers out there? The role involves organising the committee meetings (twice a year) and the AGM (once a year) and taking the minutes at these meetings. Please contact me if you are interested. I am also very pleased to announce that Ian Hart has agreed to become vice-chairman of the Branch.

Micromoth Atlas of Herefds. & Worcs. Part 1 published 2003
This is the second atlas by Michael Harper and Tony Simpson published by the Branch. It will be the first atlas to show distribution maps of the micros on a 10km square basis at county level. The atlas is likely to be of national as well as regional importance. See below for details and how to order. The atlas will undoubtedly lead to a much greater awareness and interest in recording micro-moths. It will also greatly assist in the understanding and conservation of this large and very interesting group.

On behalf of the branch I would like to thank Jim and Christine Chance for the enormous effort they have put in, compiling the data as well as designing, editing and printing the atlas. Our thanks also to Mike and Tony for producing another high quality publication. All of this work by Mike, Tony, Jim and Christine has been carried out on a voluntary basis and they have generously agreed that all the proceeds should go to assist branch funds.

Annual Review 2002
After a major data inputting effort by Neil and Corinna, the bulk of the historical transect data are now on computer. As a result we can now present and analyse the data much more readily. The many charts showing the regional and national trends since 1982 are too numerous to include in this Annual Review and will instead be published on the branch website. The full version of the review will also be sent to all transect walkers. We would welcome any feedback that you have on these new data.

Data Input or Accounting Volunteers?
We still have a very large back-log of moth and butterfly records which we need to have computerised. We are looking for volunteers who have their own computers who could help us with this important task. We can provide all the software and training. Please contact me if you are interested.
We are also looking for a member (or non-member) who is an accountant to audit the Branch accounts on an annual basis. It is now a requirement that the accounts should be audited by somebody who is not on the Branch Committee. Is there anyone who would be interested in taking this on?

National Council
I was elected to the National Council of Butterfly Conservation at the AGM in November. I am looking forward to the challenge of being involved with the society at a national level.

Ian Duncan
 

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