At just over four acres, the Rhombus Field is a small, but handy-sized compartment. The Flooded Wood Pasture is directly adjacent to its north; the Middle Wood is on its east side, the Tenant Farmer’s Field is on its west side; the South Riverside Pasture and Orchid Field are along its southern boundary.
The image suggests dryness and that a carelessly thrown lighted match might set it all alight, but the whole field is waterlogged for most of the year and crisscrossed with hidden drainage ditches. The Rhombus Field will try to swallow the person or beast that stands in one place for too long. It is certainly easy to get your wellies filled with water here. The growing season produces lush verdant vegetation tall enough to hide the herd from view. In winter, Wayne and Waynetta, out belted Galloway cattle, blend well with the straw-coloured rushes and grasses, becoming visible when they move.
The cattle are happy grazing here, but they don’t like being locked in; I leave a gate open, and they wander in and out at will.
Foxes often battle their way through the Rhombus Field in search of an unwary duck or wader. In parts of the field, they can creep along relatively stealthily; otherwise, they are forced to leap from one above water rush-tussock to another. It can be quite comical to watch, especially when the fox has a large bird in its mouth.
The Wilden Marsh volunteers had an excellent workday workout on Sunday. We cleared a year’s worth of willow and alder scrub growth from the South Marsh Entrance Section. We also managed to make a start on reducing the riverbank tree cover without the need for howling chainsaws. The weather was sunny and cold: the perfect winter volunteering conditions.
I went onto the marsh yesterday morning, another beautiful day, to clear the mess I left from the previous day’s marshing. Working on my own meant, I had time to make the iPhone video below.
The marsh gym membership is free, and there are no session fees. Please contact Worcestershire Wildlife Trust or me for further information.
I apologise if you find this video long and tedious. My videoing and editing skills might improve, given sufficient time and practice.