Up and Running

Monday, September 18th 2017

It was good to be back at the reserve having been away for a few days. It was obvious that it had been a very busy time in my absence, and the fencing on the heath is well on the way to being finished.

I hit the ground running as we had Carnagill Primary School in for the day. This would be one of the last pond dipping sessions as the water is noticeably colder and a lot of the inverts will be descending to the warmth of the mud. The bugs were scarce but we still had the ground beetles, woodlice, slugs and even the odd newt to look at by the ever questioning and enthusiastic children.

We were able to show the extent of buglife near the flower meadow with spiders and harvestmen, plus the various craneflies and other diptera present. I am always amazed at how much life there is in just a square metre of grassland.

From the smiles of the attentive children who joined us today I think we all had a great time getting up close to the flora and fauna that can still be seen at this time of the year.

One of the reasons I have not been around for the last week or so, is because four of the ringing group went to spend time at a ringing station in Norway, near Tromso. It was good to experience new species such as the Tengmalms Owl….

....Yellow-browed Warblers

....as well as Three-toed Woodpeckers, Arctic Redpolls and other species we only get a glimpse of during our winter period.

Thank you to our fantastic hosts Karl-Birger Strann and Vigdis Frivoll who not only kept us well fed, but also well trained in various aspects of ringing techniques and bird ageing etc.  The use of elevator nets in Northern Norway (above), well within the Arctic Circle, is quite routine.


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