Wilden Marsh toads in a puddle.

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From Mike Averill: Just had to take this shot, not because it had yellow dung fly on it but because it looked perfect, with that rippled effect not wet and sloppy like dairy cow dung. Studies have shown that cowpats from dairy herds hold 40% fewer insects than wildlife grazed areas. That is going to be more attractive to foraging birds especially if they are worm treatment free.

I will treasure the marsh dung from now on, Mr Averill. Thanks for bringing this to my attention. 🙂

This old marsh willow pollard has a torso growing from it. Well, it’s not a torso, it’s a torso and a pair of legs. Can you see it? I have passed this Pollard for eleven years and only today saw the escapee. 

The cattle have been busy over the past six months reducing last year’s vegetative growth in preparation for this year’s growing season. We have paid particular attention to clearing Middle Wood, Rhombus Field, Tenant Farmer’s Field, Flooded Wood Pasture and areas around South pool to improve ground conditions for wading birds. My grazing plan is ahead of schedule this year because the cattle have not been in the Orchid Field.

I walked the Rhombus Field mire yesterday and realised enough ground cover had been cleared, so I moved the cattle to the South Marsh – hooray!

Wilden Marsh Nature Reserve bird nesting season begins 1st April and ends 10th August. Access for Worcestershire Wildlife Trust members and permit holders will be restricted to the South Entrance Section riverside pathway and the first metal five-bar gate just south of South Pool.

I went back into the Rhombus Field earlier today while the cattle were on the South Marsh; common snipe were flushing as I moved through the compartment. There are plenty of snipe around South Pool, and they too quickly fly zigzagging up and away when their space is invaded.

The video below is for the record and shows what a mire the Rhombus field is.

(Click on the image to see the video)

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