On Saturday I did a Birdwatch Safari at Farlington, we had quite a good day, well four hours or so, although we missed a fair few things that I had hoped to see. I confess that I was not at my best being well and truly full of a stinking cold, but the air seemed to do me good and seventy species of birds was not a bad total. Amongst the birds seen were redstart, spotted redshank, whinchat, a close kestrel and a very, very distant osprey
Today we were at Swanwick again trying to move the cattle, with the help of rather more people it was pretty straight forward and they seemed to appreciate the new grass.
The north-east meadow, where they were is an area that had become colonised by trees and which we are intending to make into wood pasture, a habitat once common in the Forest of Bere. In essence it is just open woodland grazed by cattle or ponies, but it has a very distinctive character and wildlife. The picture below is a panorama of the meadow, the browse-line, the level the cattle can reach when eating the leaves off the trees is very evident.
I then went down to Farlington to investigate reports that one of the cattle had got out onto the seawall, there were signs alright, but not of the animal, it seemed to have gone back into the field on its own and I found a missing staple that had allowed the wire to droop, so hopefully it will not get out again.
Unusual sight of the day was at the Beechcroft office first thing in the morning, a peahen with what I, at first thought was a domestic hen, but then realised was a peacock chick, in the Trust yard where we keep the reserve truck.