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Silly Gwen, rabbits hadn't evolved 440 million years ago, it was mostly brachiopods.

May 19, 2019 at 3:34 PM | Unregistered CommenterAK

May 19, 2019 at 12:11 PM | AK

Were there any rabbits present then, or did they get parachuted in to mow the grass?

May 19, 2019 at 2:05 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

SITD if modern environmentalists can't identify a myxy rabbit, dead or alive, it is very disappointing. Assuming carcases remained on Skomer, an autopsy could have proved or eliminated myxy and established the actual cause of death.

I do not doubt that the Island's Ecology has been improved. Deliberate mass rat poisoning has occurred on South Georgia to benefit seabirds.

If they don't know what killed the rabbits, how do they know the Island is safe for humans or seabirds?

May 19, 2019 at 1:58 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

I don't know a great deal about the Bristol Channel area. Never visited South Wales, and only been to North Devon and Somerset a few times, inverse Watford Gap Syndrome. The geology of Britain is not a specialist subject for me, but for a relatively small area* there seems to be a great deal of variety.

*Only 9th largest island currently not sure what effect catastrophic sea-level rise will do to that particularlleague table!

May 19, 2019 at 1:36 PM | Unregistered CommenterStill In The Dark

SITD. Skomer Island used to be totally banned to visitors. In 1963 I was looking around for a PhD topic and became interested in the strata exposed in Pembrokeshire and neighbouring SE Ireland. The unavailability of several critical cliff sections at Skomer put paid to that idea. Did you know there are very old volcanic rocks exposed at Skomer and nearby Marloes Sands?

May 19, 2019 at 12:11 PM | Unregistered CommenterAK

Golf Charlie
Could the demise of rabbits be due to disease brought by additional visitors, myxamtosis for example, not the sort of thing you'd publish. A population which had been isolated for decades would be vulnerable to disease.

May 19, 2019 at 11:45 AM | Unregistered CommenterStill In The Dark

I'm not entirely sure they lost, Morriston isn't exactly singing off the same hymn sheet as Trump on AGW.

May 19, 2019 at 11:38 AM | Unregistered CommenterStill In The Dark

"Great news: "Skomer island's Manx shearwater census shows 10% rise"
May 19, 2019 at 8:21 AM | Mark Hodgson"

I have never been to Skomer, but was intrigued, so:

"In 2005–06, there was a renovation project of the farm buildings which included the old barn for improved overnight visitor and research accommodation, the volunteers' quarters were rebuilt and the warden's house at North Haven was also rebuilt. Solar power provides hot water and electricity for lighting. " Note that wind turbines are not mentioned, though in other articles from Google Skomer Wind Turbines they had been. This must make it safer for birds.

Then there is the sudden rabbit mass extermination event. I am sure Skomer is better without rabbits, but what happened on this monitored Nature Reserve, that none of the experts can understand?
"There are legions of toads, and there were once thousands of rabbits, but up to 95% of them died last winter, and nobody is quite sure why. The rabbit disaster has changed the vegetation on Skomer from a billiard table pock-marked with nesting burrows to longer grasses and plants."

Was it the sound of suppressed sudden impact lead poisoning that no one heard?

May 19, 2019 at 11:37 AM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

May 19, 2019 at 3:29 AM | clipe

Reading through many of the responses is a reminder of the mindset of antifa activists. A pitiful bunch.

May 19, 2019 at 11:13 AM | Unregistered CommenterDaveS

Ok that should read "strikes"

May 19, 2019 at 10:27 AM | Unregistered CommenterRoss Lea

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