Monday, January 05, 2015

Another catch up post

Too much time in the park and not enough time at the computer so not many posts recently. Any way we now have a selection of wintering ducks in the park covering all of the expected species although not in the numbers we normally expect, probably due to the warmer winter weather we have been experiencing. The decision not to feed the ducks, by the rangers, unless we have a prolonged cold spell may also be having an effect in the numbers of winter ducks.

We've also had a couple of occasional visitors in the form of Goldeneye and Goosander. The latter showed up on the Christmas guided bird walk which was handy.

Another recent visitor was a Penduline Tit which showed up on 100 Acre. This caused major excitement amongst the local birders and some not so local birders too. There are some great pictures of this bird over on the Beds Birds Blog.

As I mentioned earlier I've been volunteering with the rangers a lot recently. Firstly there was some tree cutting at Fish Ponds. We did some tree pruning and brush cutting in the Cardington Mill car park followed by a trip to Browns Wood and Putnoe Wood on the following day. I then joined Jane for some tree thinning up at Mowsbury Hillfort NR over the Christmas/New Year period.

Yesterday I was back with the monthly Sunday volunteers coppicing at the east end of the main lake. We had a good turnout despite freezing temperatures and we managed to get quite a bit done. It needs a little more tidying up so we might be back there again.

Mute Swan drying off after morning wash and brush up.
We've had a couple of dead Mute Swan's in the last couple of weeks. Not sure of the cause, they may have been taken by Foxes or dogs but we are keeping an open mind and will be keeping our eyes open over the coming days and weeks. If you come across any dead birds in the park please notify the rangers. If they are not at the visitor centre office then a contact number is always posted on the VC door.