red squirrel at the feeding station
Saturday's beginner's workshop
Spot three arachnologists in Glen Fincastle!
Our 2014 AGM and field weekend was held at the magnificent, if at times soggy, Kindrogan Field Studies Centre
, in Scotland.
At Friday night's AGM, when five new trustees were elected to BAS Council (transforming both the age and sex ratio!) arachnological loyalties were tested by the knowledge that, just outside, red squirrels and a pine marten were visiting the Centre's feeding station. Fortunately though, they were captured on CCTV for us to enjoy after the meeting.
Saturday was shared between a beginner's workshop, based around and at the Centre, and collecting trips rather further afield.
We were accompanied for much of the weekend by a film crew from Windfall films, working on the BBC4 Documentary Spider House.
On Saturday night, talks by council members Richard Wilson and Alastair Lavery (newly elected as vice-president) followed Jan Beccaloni's annual competition - this year for our most prized piece of arachnological 'kitsch'!
Richard talked about his recent work on upland rarities - and particularly Semljicola caliginosus - in the northern Pennines. Richard has received BAS grants to help fund this work - click here to find out more about the grants available to support members' research projects. Alastair's fascinating talk was about his work on spider fauna of the Falklands - far from just a species list, his talk ranged from the likely geographical origins of the different species and the predicted spread and impact of recent colonists. To read more about his important work there in the BAS journal Arachnology - (Volume 16 (2): 37-60).
After breakfast on Sunday, the long journey south began for many but for other southerners some enviable extra days in Scotland were rewarded by fantastic sunny weather and great spider hunting.
The weekend's write-up and species list will appear in a future issue of our Newsletter.
The magnificent Kindrogan FSC Centre
The Windfall crew 'eavesdropping' on the workshop
The 2014 AGM at Kindrogan