All quiet on the blog front at the moment. I have a large report based contract with a tight deadline that has been consuming all of my free time. Hoping for a bit of free writing time in a week or so.
Did spot a beefly in the garden today though, so I know spring is nearly here!
My trip to Madagascar is going really well. I have worked with a local NGO called Madagasikara Voakajy to help with two new projects - one dealing with chameleons and the other mantella. I will post more about this upon my return to Britain next week. In the meantime, the following photo should give a hint of what I have been looking for!
Last but not least, I have finally added my Twitter Feed to the blog. The feed gives updates on my current activities and can be reviewed in the sidebar to the right. Feel free to follow me!
I was hoping to post an item today about how I can post new stories from my shiny new 3G iPhone. Unfortunately, Apple's servers appear to be completely overwhelmed by new activations and my phone is sat on the desk looking very sad..! With it's camera, built in GPS and the ability to download third party applications, I'm keen on developing a system for collecting records in the field and automatically syncing them with the recording database. I used to do something similar with an old Palm Pilot, but the horrible user interface made the process slow and clunky - it has to be better than pencil and paper to be useful.
Instead, I'll let you know that the process of retrieving old blog posts is coming along. I still have 2004 - 2006 to complete but hey, at least I have finished 2003 and 2007!
Unfortunately, it appears that there is no quick and easy way of retrieving the old blog posts. This is rather annoying!
I have managed to export the old posts into a sensible date organised structure and I can recreate each post. However, rebuilding the blog could take some time...
Old blog posts will start to appear over the coming days (weeks!?).
Of course it would be sensible to recreate the latest posts first..!
There may be some small changes in formatting between the old archive and presentation in this blog. I am trying to retain all images and links. For design aesthetics, photo captions are being dropped. However, all editorial content will remain intact.
In an attempt at consistency, I have deleted author credits that relate to myself. That is, unless otherwise stated all blog entries should be considered to be authored by me. There are several entries that were authored by other folks and these are all credited as appropriate.
Well now that the KRAG website is successfully up and running, it's time for me to get back to blogging on the state of the world - or at least how it relates to reptile and amphibian recording in Kent (hem).
As ever, the spring has been extraordinarily busy with lots of survey work being undertaken - mostly commercial surveys connected with my business. This blue spotted male slow-worm being just one highlight.
However, there have been lots of developments in the seedy world of conservation and several topics just demand my attention. But not just yet.
I have decided to significantly update the blog - both in terms of design and content. In doing so I will have to leave behind the software that has served me well since September 2003. The world of blogging has moved on quite a bit since then and it really is time that I refreshed the site and updated my approach. Indeed it looks like I will probably settle for an online system such as TypePad for hosting the blog. I'm therefore faced with a bit of a quandary. What to do with all of the old posts? The problem with standalone software is proprietary file formats. This wasn't really an issue back in 2003 when I first set up the blog. However, it is now.
I would prefer not to loose the old posts so I am looking at ways of importing them into the new blog. Not as easy as it sounds, but I will give it a try. Failing that, I will probably keep the old blog around as an archive, with all new posts appearing on TypePad.
Another change to the blog, is that it will revert to once again being very much my opinion on the world, rather than a mechanism for publishing KRAG news. Thanks to Jen and Mike, the KRAG website is quite capable and simply doesn't need the blog. In a way that's something of a relief, since I can now be less concerned over publishing posts that may be considered detrimental to the group (some folks have suggested that I am quite opinionated you know..!). It also means that I can use the blog as a mechanism for commenting on issues that affect my job as a professional ecological consultant and perhaps some of my other interests. We'll see.
In case you are wondering about the title - it's amazing how something that starts off as simple as a design refresh can lead to a complete overhaul. I'll let you guess the title of the film (and I don't mean the remake).
As you might have been able to tell over the past few days, I am updating the software used to run the blog.
Unfortunately, things are not going quite as smooth as I would like...! Several photos appear to have disappeared and font formatting is off in a few places. I will be looking into these issues and correcting problems as I find them.
The blog has taken a bit of a sleep over the past couple of months.
Fear not, the KRAG crowd are all still actively conserving the county's reptiles and amphibians. Watch this space for some updates over the next few days. There may even be a slight change in design...
As principal ecologist for Calumma Ecological Services, I am able to put my interest in reptiles and amphibians to good effect. Like most folks that work with wildlife, my activities extend beyond just 'the job' and I am also involved with several local conservation groups. Being the county recorder for reptiles and amphibians in Kent certainly helps me to fill in those spare moments when I'm not busy with the kids!
Calumma Ecological Services is a Kent based ecological consultancy that specialises in protected species surveys and habitat assessments.
Kent Reptile and Amphibian Group
For more information about Kent's reptiles and amphibians visit the Kent Reptile and Amphibian Group's website.
Submit a Record Have you seen a frog in your garden pond? Better yet an adder while out walking?! If you would like to let KRAG know about an amphibian or reptile observation, please complete the online recording card.
Recording Diary KRAG organises a full programme of events throughout the year. For more details about forthcoming attractions, visit the KRAG web site.
Old Blog Posts Still Available Archived posts in the old blog are still available - and will be for ever if I don't work out how to import them into this new site!
Amphibian and Reptile Group of South Lancashire
For more information about the reptiles and amphibians found in Lancashire, visit the ARGSL website.