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Ecobuild competition winner and answers announced

27 March 2012

The ECOSA team had a great time at Ecobuild and look forward to working with some of the self-builders, architects, construction experts and others whom they met.

Meantime, we laid down a challenge for visitors to our stand: how well did they know their UK wildlife. The five questions related to our bell-jar exhibits:

A. Was this animal (represented by the skull of a badger) known as: a furze-pig, a brock or a mouldywarp?

B. Do primroses typically live for: 2 years, 12 years or 25 years?

C. Is this the tail feather of: a red kite, a common buzzard or a long-eared owl?

D. What is the Latin name for a grass snake? Natrix natrix, Vipera berus or Anguis fragilis?

E. Would a death's head hawkmoth: be poisonous to bats, squeak when captured or be a Celtic delicacy?

The correct answers were:

A. A badger was called a brock in old English, a hedgehog was known a furze-pig and a mole as a mouldywarp.

B. Primroses typically live for 25 years.

C. The tail feather on display was from a common buzzard.

D. The Latin name for the grass snake is Natrix natrix. Vipera berus is the common European adder and Anguis fragilis the slow-worm.

E. Death's-head hawkmoths, like the one displayed, are named for the characteristic skull-like mark on the back of their thorax and are unusual in that they emit an audible squeak when captured or irritated.  We have no evidence to suggest that they are either toxic to bats or were relished by the ancient Celts.

So very well done Sue Schwartz who not only got all the answers right but also was first out of the 'hat' and will shortly be receiving her prize of vouchers for a day's course or an evening for two at River Cottage. If you scored 2, 1 or even 0, be assured: it was a tough quiz.  If you scored 5: exceedingly well done!  If you scored 3 or more: why not try again when we bring our next bell-jar competition to an event?

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