As in previous years, ENHG recordings have largely reflected the personal interests of those few members who have contributed on a regular basis. Our prime recording areas continue to be in the fields of Archaeology, Insects, Ornithology, Plants and Reptiles. Geography, geology, climatology and marine life remain peripheral aspects of our activities though it is very pleasing to note that the recording and identification of local marine shells has shown a considerable advance in 1981 over previous years, as can be seen by the display in the Workroom. I might add that the shell recorders welcome any local collection, however small, along with relevant data on location and environment.
The Archaeology recorder has continued to monitor excavations by visiting teams working mostly in the Al Ain area where Bbronze and Iron Age sites are under investigation. There is also the beginnings of a proto-neolithic chronology for the Emirates which will increase in importance as distribution maps are drawn up and analysed. A field trip to Umm an Nar was made in early December.
There has been an upsurge in insect recording both through the efforts of Diane Donohue who has produced copious notes on collecting and equipment and of Giles Roche, who has introduced a very professional expertise into the Group's activities with his collections and classifications of local bees and wasps. His total of species collected in the Emirates for 198I stands at around 250, of which several species are new to science. Both these recorders have corresponded with overseas experts and their efforts augur well for the 1982 season. In addition Mike Southey has begun his collection and study of spiders found in the UAE.
Over the past three years the country's plant cover, particularly in Abu Dhabi Emirate, has been randomly but extensively surveyed and the Group is now in a position to begin producing distribution maps and accompanying notes of the eighty or so species so far positively identified. Interested members may contact the plant recorders for information about how and where to collect plants and for advice on identification.
Following the computerisation of UAE blrd recording in 1980, this past year has seen a srnall but steady stream of reported sightings, particulclrly during the spring and autumn migration periods. The bird recorder is now compiling a list of species which are known to nest locally or offshore. The Great-Crested Grebe is one new Group recording for 1981.