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Essex Field Club
Essex Field Club
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This forum has now been more or less replaced by the Club's Facebook page at
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The weblog below is for naturalists to use to report interesting sightings, ask questions, report on field meetings and generally post pictures and any information or questions generally relevant in some way to the wildlife and geology of Essex. You will need to register and be logged-on to post to the forum, and you need to upload pictures first, for use in posts. Find out more


Fri 17th August 2012 15:42 by Michael Daniels
More controvercy and a mail from Canada
I wrote in response to the topics raised by the faithful small band of contributors who keep the Forum supplied with interesting viewpoints.  I pressed SUBMIT and the piece over which I had laboured disappeared, but did not appear in the website 'post your news' page.  Checked with Peter and he was unable to answer that conundrum and now some of what I had to say including comments on the meteors, are now irrelevant.

Also I asked Peter if he thought a mail from our good friend who lives on Vancouver Island might be worth copying into the Forum.  This had much to say about present weather conditions across North America. We lived in Canada for a while and certainly know all about the climate there, but it never was as bad as those out there are now experiencing.  Anyway Peter agreed that the interest it might raise could induce a few more contributions from a wider circle than just from those who at present keep the Forum active.

I don't know about all that commotion from the highway near you Graham, like some even more hellish variant of Stockhausen's compositions.  Not wishing to be assaulted by either, but at least you can turn off Stockhausen, not so with traffic and the volume of such gets everyday more alarming.  How can we continue in this way, not only on the roads, but everywhere else we look, man seems to be determined to wreck the environment, particularly the thin atmospheric layers that make life possible on this planet.  Damaging this as we so certainly appear to be doing, then we will soon enter a catastrophic phase from which there may be no recovery. Already there are clear signs that the process is well underway.

In 1815 the volcano Tambora on the island of Sumbawa in present day Indonesia erupted causing world-wide climatic effects - producing what came to be know as 'the year without a summer'.  There is plenty to read about this event on the Internet.  However, volcanoes usually die down after their initial massive outburst and after a time things return to near normal.  But, as one reads about and in many respects actually experience all the strange climatic occurrences now being felt across the world, this time around we cannot blame natural forces for these disastrous effects, we, all of us to a degree, are responsible in one way or another for crucially damaging this world and its fragile environments. The trouble here, is what is the alternative to the way we so irresponsibly conduct our lives, and the forlorn answer seems to be we cannot do anything for what is now in train.  Oh yes, some will say this concern is overstated, overly pessimistic.  Maybe, but it is worth looking up Tambora and now reading what our good friend in British Columbia has to say.  Here she writes and it should be noted she has only recently got into using of her computer, indeed typing - she's doing very well!  Came from Loughton originally!

From Vancouver Island; and by the way I told her I might like to use it in our website forum.

'Just thought I would send you a few lines. Hope you are both well, as it leaves us here. We need rain badly, all the Lawns are going brown,it been weeks since we had any Rain, in some places they have had to much, land slides,killing 4 people, yesterday in Alberta, they had Hail the size of Tennis Balls, done Millions of Dollars of damage, every Car on the Dealers Car Lots, were full of dents, and all the Windows broken, it was a real mess, everywhere. Saskatchewan, has had 32 Tornado's so far this Year. Manitoba has been hot and dry, lots of crop failures here, as well as in the State, the Fruit here has been a good Year, lots of Blackberries for free to go and pick. I don't know if I told you, but they have a Gleaners Club here, people can call and ask for their Fruit to be picked, they get half, and the Pickers get half.  Good for Cherries, had some Plums , now some Apples, so Teresa goes with her Sister, should be Pears soon, I thought it a good idea, rather than go to waste.  I said just a few lines when I started, then all kind of things come to mind, seems like the Games were a success, I did not think much of the Closing, only watched some then turned it off.  Did you watch the Meteor Showers, we did for a couple of nights, we saw the Space Station go over, plus a few Saterlites, the Sky has been so clear, plus no bugs to bite you, so it is pleasant to be able to sit outside without getting bitten to pieces, well I guess that I had better stop my ramblings and get to Bed'.

Just a final comment on our friend's experiences with the mosquitos out there, they certainly present a mighty problem.  Before we emigrated we were warned about those insects, told they were so large they would pick you up and carry you off - not quite!  As far as their bite was concerned did not think that was as potent as the British ones, which cause itching for days!  Oh yes, one more thought, Coastal British Columbia is noted for its rainy climate and they jokingly respond when other Canadian's talk of all the rain experience along their Pacific shore, they say 'no worry, at least you don't have to shovel rain'.

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