News Flash: Wilden Marsh Cattle Spotted Swimming Down The River Stour towards Stourport-on-Severn
It seems that many people heard the heavy rain on Saturday night/Sunday morning; I didn’t because I was fast asleep in bed. It wasn’t raining as I made my breakfast on Sunday morning, so the height of the River Stour and Hoo Brook surprised me when I arrived on the marsh a little later. Normally, high river and brook water levels isn’t an issue for me, the more water the better as far as I’m concerned, but the cattle are grazing the Tenant Farmer’s Field and it’s riverside bank isn’t fully stock fenced.
So off I trudged down to the Tenant Farmer’s Field yesterday morning to see how things were there. When I see a fridge freezer floating past me, it sets off a pre-set in my brain and an image of cattle swimming down the River Stour pops up into my mind. A fridge freezer did pass me as I struggled along the Northern Riverside Pasture. The river water level was 300mm below the corridor bank, and it was rising fast – by 4pm the water had stopped rising and a dry night was forecast. I weighed things up and decided to leave the cattle where they were overnight and review the situation today, before sloshed my way home through the marsh hoping that my dinner wasn’t inside the dog again.
Here are a few images of the water levels.
This morning the rain pelted down and bounced off the road in front of my house. I wondered if I had made the right decision late yesterday afternoon. There weren’t any messages on my mobile this morning about cattle being spotted swimming down the River Stour towards Stourport-on-Severn, nor any news flashes to that effect, so I took Spike out for his usual morning constitutional through Hoo Wood. Looking down from Hoo Wood, I couldn’t see any flooding. So when I later walked onto the marsh, I wasn’t expecting any problems. The brook water level had dropped overnight by a metre. However, the forecast was heavy rain all day and throughout tomorrow morning.
The river and brook water levels were rising again, and by late afternoon they were almost as high as yesterday. I stood at the Tenant Farmer’s Field gate late this afternoon thinking: Should I move the cattle or not. All of sudden, the rain stopped. I took this as a sign that the weather god was playing with me and immediately began moving the cattle to the North Pasture and safety. As we waddled along the corridor, the weather god started throwing buckets of rain at us – yes, it was bucking down! My twenty-five year old Gortex cagoule shell is not up to deflecting buckets of water falling from the skies. Anyway, at least the cattle are safe from the dangers of overnight flooding.
Life is like a box of chocolates!