Woodland birds on route to extinction as numbers dive

Birds of Britain's woodlands are declining so rapidly that some appear to be on the road to extinction, a study reveals today.

Album: The Hold Steady, Stay Positive (Vagrant)

The Hold Steady, for the inattentive, are a Brooklyn quintet whose sound fuses Eighties hardcore with bar-room blues: imagine Hüsker Dü meets the E Street Band. Their USP is that their major players were already well into their thirties when the band formed, and are now staring down the barrel of 40.

Plum sherbet

Serves 4

My Mentor: Caroline Flack on Leigh Francis

'Leigh is really supportive and honest. he watches everything i do'

John Walsh: Tales from Hay-on-Wye

'From his wheelchair, Gore Vidal glowered indignantly, like a man who had been exhumed against his will'

Der Rosenkavalier, Coliseum, London

In the final scene of Strauss's Der Rosenkavalier, just as the Marschallin is about to leave her lover, Octavian, to the younger woman, she says to Sophie: "No need to talk so much. You're pretty, that's enough." But is it? For those who hope that Octavian will come to his senses and leave the air-headed ingnue before it's too late, David McVicar's production plants some hopeful clues. Indeed, Octavian only just stops short of following the Marschallin out of that final scene, almost sparing us that saccharin duet between the young lovers. I reckon McVicar gives them about a month together.

Michael McCarthy - Migration: 'One of earth's great wonders'

The African-Eurasian bird migration system is one of the earth's great wonders, a gigantic signal of spring and autumn in the northern hemisphere.

Jimmy Choo feud: Tamara sticks boot in on mother with £5m action

They say that a foxy pair of heels can give a woman a lot of confidence. It therefore makes sense that Tamara Mellon, the entrepreneur behind Jimmy Choo shoes, has confidence in spades. It showed when she divorced her husband, the Pittsburgh banking heir Matthew Taylor Mellon III, in 2005. It showed again a year ago when she took him to court, accused of hacking into her computer. He was released on the grounds that he was too stupid to have done it – he must have been wearing something scuffed from Clark's. It showed, too, when she named her daughter Araminta Mellon, which some recall as a 1970s dessert.

The Investment Column: Housing crisis is bad news for Taylor Wimpey

Northern Foods; Travelzest

Johannesburg: Capital of sub-Saharan Africa

Cairo may outshine Johannesburg as capital of the continent of Africa (see table), but the sub-Saharan prize is, from a visitor's point of view, arguably more important. For all its flaws and fractures, Johannesburg has transformed itself from outcast to world class in less than two decades and is way ahead of the likes of Lagos, Nairobi and Addis Ababa. Built on the world's most productive reef of gold, it has been a centre of wealth and opportunity since the first prospectors started digging in the 1880s, but its development was hampered by that crude ideology, apartheid. Only after 1994, when Nelson Mandela began shaping the new "rainbow nation", could Johannesburg look the rest of the world in the eye.

Close-up: Claire Ptak

Chez Panisse couldn't hold on to this pastry chef. Can east London do better?

The company that ate itself: How a lack of dough turned into a crisis for Krispy Kreme

At the Krispy Kreme shop in Washington's Dupont Circle yesterday morning a steady stream of customers were making their way inside to get their hands on the freshly cooked doughnuts. "I come here every morning for two of them," admitted a guilty-sounding Maneda Harrington, a 28-year-old accountant. "They're delicious."

Victoria Wood and co. take 'Acorn Antiques' to West End as musical

They ate their first macaroons together nearly 20 years ago and now they are reuniting to do so again. But this time the cast of "Acorn Antiques" will be all-singing and dancing as Victoria Wood has turned her spoof soap sketches into a musical.

Snail porridge? It's a matter of taste

The world's best chefs are embracing molecular gastronomy - the combination of odd ingredients to stunning effect. But can you cook it at home, asks Christopher Hirst

Nestlé feels the chill as ice cream sales melt

Nestlé joined its rival Unilever in blaming cool European weather for poor second-quarter sales, as demand for ice cream melted.

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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering