Hot Potatoes

Another day another volunteer task with celebratory foodstuffs. Today we were working at Hook Heath Meadows, continuing the seemingly never-ending task of scrub clearance as we try to get the site more like a group of meadows and less like a woodland.

Volunteers at Hook Heath

Volunteers at Hook Heath

Today’s task followed on from one on the same site yesterday and utilised the fire from then to provide lunch in the shape of baked potatoes, which were the best I have had in ages, with baked beans and cheese. Rob was head chef and a fine job he made of it, potatoes were double wrapped in foil and cooked in the embers for 45 minutes, coming out just perfect  and beans were cooked in the tins thoughtfully provided by the manufacturer.

cooking Hook Heath style

cooking Hook Heath style

The reserve is looking pretty good now with the grassland areas starting to get joined up as we open up gaps in the scrub and the Wallingbrook stream adds variety to the habitat.

Hook Heath habitat

Hook Heath habitat

Although we are reducing the woodland hazel will remain an important element and I noticed that the catkins are starting to swell a little, if we get a mild January they will be open by the end of the month.

hazel catkins

hazel catkins

Looking around the grassland I came across a group of tiny fungi, or at least that is what I think they were, growing on a cow pat, although only on one pat. I have tried to identify them but so far without success, any ideas?

fungus on cow dung

fungus on cow dung

In the middle of the afternoon I got  a call to say that the contractors that maintain the radio mast had got their vehicle stuck, again. For some reason they stray off the track and then are surprised when they get bogged down, the clue is in the name, it is Farlington MARSHES! I had to go down and get the tractor out to tow them to dry land, so I was on site late enough to see the brent geese fly to roost and the moon rise over the marsh.

moon

moon

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