Reserve Lockdown

Farlington Bird News: short-eared owl 2, redwing c20, swallow c20.

I was at Farlington Marshes to work with Rob and the volunteers today. I actually arrived early to see what was happening with the Environment Agency and their plans to finally start work on the seawall works. The good news is that they have started work, the bad news is that this means the seawall path will be completely closed from the western entrance into the Bushes to the west side of the Point Field for about eight weeks! I had hoped there would be some scope for access when they were not actually moving machines about, but this has not been possible.

We were working with the volunteers north of the A27 today clearing the upper end of the stream and ditches to make sure they are all flowing as they should. It seems to be some time since this was done and we had a good bit of cutting back to do to even get to the ditches. However we got there in the end and the ditches are all flowing well. There still seems to be a flooding problem under the trees alongside the railway, but this is related to a blockage in the ditch along the railway. There was also a second task to clear a fallen branch, actually more like a whole trunk that had fallen from a large crack willow near the spring. This gave Rob an excuse to wield the chainsaw leaving me in the bottom of a muddy ditch for much of the day. I had got pictures of all this endeavour, but WordPress picture uploader has gone AWOL on me.

Wildlife was rather sparse, 2 short-eared owl were reported from the Point Field and I saw a fair few redwing and song thrush in the Bushes first thing (but still no ring ouzel). A small group of swallow flew over us as we sorted out the tools at the Building, flying east. As we worked we heard a few chiffchaff and a single green sandpiper flew over.

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