A day spent in a staff meeting, but as it was a Wildlife Trust staff meeting at least most of it had some wildlife content and it also incorporated a very wet BioBlitz. I was asked to head up a team, we came a good bit behind the winners, although they were always going to be the botanists. We went for variety and in our approximately 15 minutes recorded a mammal, an amphibian, several birds, four molluscs, three crustaceans, two moths, a butterfly, a millipede, a centipede, a harvestman and a number of plants, there was also a lot of unidentified wildlife.
We had to tell a short tale about one of our species, this resulted in a range information from dragonflies and caddisflies, to parasites and parasites of parasites. I went for a slug, there is a slug story for all occasions, no really there is! (well almost anyway). Mine was of leopard slugs, which like a few other related species, mate dangling from a long thread of mucus, if you have never seen it this was one of the stand out scenes from “Life in the Undergrowth”. It lead to a further sluggy story from our celebrity guest, we don’t always have one of these, but we did today. Today’s celebrity was Nick Baker, his story was about the other slug in my pot, Arion ater. He told us how they rock from side to side when prodded, which I knew, but also, which I did not, that the thick mucus the secrete at the same time has an anaesthetic effect, he knew this because he had licked one!
Sounds like the best staff meeting in a long while!! With Nick Baker too – amazing!
Nick Baker did WHAT !!!!!!!!. Otherwise, I enjoyed all your 30 Days Wild.
Bob, I think you intended to type ‘anaesthetic effect’ rather than ‘aesthetic effect’ to describe the slug mucus!
Ooooops! very true, thank you Catherine.