I suppose the lack of activity on this blog could be explained by the fact that the author (me) obviously hasnt done anything or seen anything of note since the last post. This assumption would be wrong, the fact that I've simply been too lazy to upload any photos off my phone is probably closer to the mark....
Anyway, work has carried on as-per-usual at Rutland over the past couple of weeks, the winter work programme is well under way now so there's been a nice introduction to the heap of woodland work we'll be doing this winter.
A spot of scrub clearance along the circular path on Lax Hill also allowed me to photgraph the surrounding lagoons last week, this shot shows Heron bay on the left, Lagoon 8 in the foreground and Lagoon 7 at the back.
Whereas this shot looks North/Northwest, showing Lagoon 5 on the far left, Lagoon 6 in the central foreground and Lagoon 1 at the back.
A bit of work has also been done surveying the Water Vole population on the reserve, you may have seen the Vole rafts (pictured below) dotted around the reserve and these are key to drawing up a census of vole numbers. The voles will use these platforms as latrines and with regular monitoring a picture of relative abundance across the reserve can be obtained.
Learnt to drive this tractor too...and it was good.
Moving onto birding related news, Hooded Birder has bought a scope! Here it is in all its glory, chilling in the garden this afternoon1 Best news of all - my cameraphone still works with it so I'll still be able to provide the odd eye-burner!
I've also managed to do a bit of birding with the new scope this past week. Last Monday (22nd) was the date for a staff trip birdwatching to Norfolk and although it coincided with terrible murky weather conditions it also coincided with a lovely fall of migrants on the East coast! First stop of the day was Holme Dunes where you couldn't really see more than 100 yards in any direction but this hardly mattered as migrants were everywhere! Fieldfare and Redwing in the 1000's, Mipits and Skylarks aplenty, bushes literally heaving with Goldcrest and the odd Chiffchaff, truly a spectacular fall with particular highlights for me being a healthy number of Brambling and two, maybe three Black Redstart. Nothing rarer was winkled out (reports later in the day of RB flycatcher and OBP though) so we moved along to Titchwell where a Little Stint was about the best of it. Good day out though in unbelieveable fall conditions, that one will live long in the memory.
I also had an amble around the North part of Egleton reserve on Friday afternoon, taking in the delights of Lagoon 2, 3 & 4 whilst playing with the new scope.
Birds of note included a few Redpoll and Siskin behind Lagoon 2, 7 Dunlin, 3 Redshank, 1 Ruff and 46 Golden Plover on Lagoon 4 and 5 Snipe and a Green Sandpiper on Lagoon 3.
|Lagoon 4 waders|
|Greenie on 3|
|Snipe having a scratch|