For the Record

Wilden Marsh keeps delivering for me; it is forever-changing. Even in the depth of winter, when the colours are nought but muted greens and browns, it keeps pulling me in.

I spent a cold hour watching my eldest grandson (8 years old) playing football in a local league this morning; it was his turn as team captain, and they won the match 3 nil. After lunch I grabbed my binoculars and drove the quarter-mile down Wilden Lane, to do a quick check on the cattle in Top Field. During the quarter-mile run I decided to go to the south marsh first to do a mini riverbank binocular survey, since I didn’t have any cameras with me – if I have cameras with me, I inevitably end up searching  for photo opportunities. The weather was dank and the visibility was good. I used my iPhone to record a video of the South Riverside Pasture for my records.

I mooched around the South Riverside Pasture for a couple of hours. I checked along the Central Drainage Ditch and worked my way to the Tenant Farmer’s Field, turned around and walked back along the riverbank. I looked into as many nooks and crannies as possible. I didn’t find any evidence of field, Bank or water voles. I saw two kingfishers, goosanders, a gaggle of Canada geese, and a gulp of half a dozen cormorants perched in a row on a power line.

The herons are beginning to stand vigil on their heronry nests, waiting for the start of their breeding season in February.

Heron at the heronry waiting for the start of its breeding season

I searched the riverbank mud, with bent back and head down. I crept around a large alder tree. Directly below my head was a very low thick branch stretching out inches above the water. In an instant, a frantic splashing below the alder branch startled me. I saw the tail of a large otter as it dived and made its way underwater to the opposite riverbank; it climbed smartly out of the river and disappeared into the bank.

Image | This entry was posted in Wilden Marsh Nature Reserve. Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to For the Record

  1. tootlepedal says:

    In spite of not seeing any voles, you saw enough to keep most people satisfied.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ashley says:

    Explain “flailing” why it’s done and what would happen if you didn’t do it. Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: Wilden Marsh Otters | The Wilden Marsh Blog

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