. Whilst we’ve had a ‘bumper crop’ and a ‘glut’ of mistletoe here in the UK they’ve had a shortage over in the USA. . Theirs is a different species of course, and not really anything like ours – except that it’s a tree parasite with white berries. . That might (white berries etc) seem to be all that matters, but have a look at the shape of the plants – American v European: (see […]
Mistletoe on SpringWatch – not bad but could do better!
Have just been viewing the BBC Springwatch Christmas Special (broadcast yesterday and on iplayer here – mistletoe is from 1.16mins to 1.20mins) to see what they said about mistletoe. I had been expecting something about Mistle Thrushes, as Kate Humble had tweeted that she was off to film Mistle Thrushes on mistletoe a few weeks ago. So, were Mistle Thrushes featured? Well no, not really, apart from some pretty shots and a verbal description of […]
The crowned frog of India, under the mistletoe
The cover of The Economist magazine’s Christmas edition features a rather confident-looking frog, sporting a small golden crown, under a sprig of mistletoe. It looks gratuitously frivolous, and it is, partly. But the frog image is taken from a very serious essay inside on the plight of frogs, particularly the frogs of the Western Ghats, in southern India. . The frog in question is just one of many species being studied by Sathyabhama Biju Das, […]
Mistletoe on the One Show
Mistletoe featured on BBC’s The One Show yesterday evening, and you can watch it again here (for a week or two). The feature is in the last 10 minutes or so of the show (or so I’m told, haven’t seen it myself yet as was out last night and on mobile internet this morning) and includes brief interviews with Suzanne Thomas (Mistletoe Foundation) on mistletoe and druidry, Mark Adams (Kissmemistletoe) on mistletoe harvesting in orchards and […]
A real mistletoe almost-extinction story – but not in the UK
There’s more than one mistletoe in the World – indeed there up to 1500 of them – and just because the UK and northern European species is not at risk of extinction (see blog entry earlier today – below or click here) doesn’t mean we can be reassured about all the others. There is concern at present about mistletoe species in Pilbara (see map left), a region of Western Australia, where changes in burning regimes are limiting […]
Will the extinction stories ever become extinct?
Spent some time in the last few days responding to press queries about the threat to mistletoe in future – with most enquirers, as usual, misunderstanding the story completely. It gets spun as a threat to mistletoe as a wild plant, with doom’n’gloom stories about mistletoe becoming ‘extinct’ in the UK in 20 years. But (as I’ve said many times before) that’s NOT the story and NOT the problem. The story is that as apple […]
How are you on mistletoe trivia?
That awkward annual question – is mistletoe declining? – has been cropping up big-time in the last few days, reminding me that the answer, yes and no, is difficult to put across. Yes it’s declining as a crop as the main harvesting habitat (orchards) are lost though removal or neglect – and so the crop might be tiny in, say, 20 years time. But no, it’s not declining, as it is not threatened at all […]
A better press story
Following on from the weekend’s oversimplistic media stories (particularly from the BBC) about a threat to mistletoe in general, there’s a much better piece in today’s Yorkshire Post. Here’s a key quote: Mistletoe, as a species, is doing just fine. But mistletoe as a crop, taken from old orchards, is certainly threatened as those orchards continue to be neglected or grubbed out. The full article is at http://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/news/community/nostalgia/evergreen_kisses_1_4069478 . .
Mistletoe is still scentless despite the candles and pot-pourri
According to this blog’s stats some people are visiting these pages following a search for ‘what does mistletoe smell like’ or words to that effect. I’m not surprised that they’re asking – as there are many seasonal mistletoe-branded scented products out there – candles, pot-pourri etc. And they’re a complete con – mistletoe doesn’t have a scent. I covered this last winter – hence the hits on the searches – but it seems timely to re-visit the […]
Misinformation in the media – wildlife ‘experts’ should know better
The usual misinformation about mistletoe decline is hitting the news again this weekend. It’s a common problem at this time of year – the mistletoe crop is threatened as the cropping habitats (traditional orchards) decline but mistletoe itself, as a species, is not threatened, and indeed seems to be increasing. So there is legit concern for the crop, and this can be used, correctly, to make a case for orchard conservation (a good thing). But that subtlety, that […]