28 September 2010

No News Like No News

My camera trapping plans have been plagued by problems the last couple of weeks. We had family visiting, bad weather, restricted access, more bad weather and worst of all an injured tittle toe (still hurts) that kept me away from checking my trail cameras.

I'm slightly concerned about the safety of my cameras at the quarry. I'm also concerned that the Bushnells might have filled their SD cards already and the Cuddeback most likely ran out of battery power by now...

The cameras are amongst the loose rocks and the Dassies go onto the flat part to feed

From afar the green "lawn" looks like grass, but it turned out to be a strange mix of plants: some moss-like and others more grass-like or shrub-like. I think the Dassies might play a role in the plant community composition. They also seem to ignore a particular plant that ends up dominating the landscape. If the plant continues the be left unchecked the Dassies might eventually lose their grazing grounds... I wish I could find out what might be happening there, but I don't have time currently to pursue the matter any further...

A very closeup photograph of the second level of the quarry

I'll try and make up for the unsolved mystery by posting these pictures of a Ladybird I photographed recently here in the Western Cape (at Tygerberg).

The Lunate Ladybird (Liewenheerbesie/Blomskilpadjie - Cheilomenes lunata) shining in the sunlight
 Looking for some aphids for breakfast

The adults and larvae are predatory and have a taste for aphids. They are found in a diverse range of habitats throughout South Africa. Interestingly some of these little bugs hitched a ride to Britain on some South African grapes (see the section near the end on the page over here).


  1. Hi Henry
    I stumbled upon your blog last night and read almost all of it. I never knew Tygerberg held such amazing life, and I guess only the traps can show that. It really got me keen to get one and try some trapping of my own. Thank you for the inspiration and you blog is great.
    I'm a biologist and marine guide, based out of Constantia. My website is www.animalocean.co.za. I mostly work with marine mega fauna but a enjoy all wildlife , especially hard to find nocturnal critters.
    Thanks for the great blog
    Steve Benjamin

  2. Thanks for the comment Steve and glad you enjoy the blog.