Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Mowing, work party and Wimpole Farm

I've finally managed to get out with the big tractor and mower this week. The Lodes way on Burwell Fen was looking lovely by the end of last Tuesday, it's probably grown a bit more now! It was a good day to be in the tractor too, with handy mounting blocks en route to stop and have a picnic lunch.
Ready, set, mow!

Picnic lunch anyone?

Freshly mown Burwell footpath

We had a work party in on Sunday, a large group from the Lion's Trust. We went up to Verralls to finish clearing some of the piles of cut down scrub that were moved around by the digger earlier in the year. They were very enthusiastic and got a good amount of work done while avoiding trampling the newly discovered Fen Violet, well done!

The Lions Trust work party at Verralls
Nikki, Ruby, Pete and I went over to Wimpole Farm for our Safe Use and Storage for Veterinary Medicines training on Wednesday. Though the information we learnt was quite daunting we enjoyed being on the farm and getting to meet the animals, especially the piglets and the shire horses. Wish us luck for the assessment on Thursday!

Cute Wimpole Piglet!

Monday, 19 May 2014

Work Parties and more work on Tubney!

Its all go on Tubney at the moment. We are working hard to get the back end of Tubney securely fenced. There are some very long stretches around this section, so a big group of us were down there on Friday and we made a bit of a dent in the work.

Earlier in the week, John and I watched some of the cows being let loose onto Tubney. The Farmer brought the cows and calves down in separate trailers and then released them at the same time; it was very cute watching the calves trying to figure out which cow was their mum!

Off we go!

Wait for me Mum!

 We also now have new bollards on the bottom of Reach Lode Bridge. Mike Overall did a great, and speedy, job installing them on Thursday. John and I then moved the large concrete rings we have been using as a substitute on Friday, as you may have seen on his twitter.

Thank you Mike for dong a great job with the new bollards
We had a work party in on Tuesday from BT. The guys were great and got loads done. We headed out to Baker’s Fen Drove for the day, and built a new Watergate to replace a rather rickety old one. They said they enjoyed the day, and we definitely appreciated their help! And only two of us got wet feet, including me due to some holey waders.
Well done to the work party guys from BT

Monday, 12 May 2014

Bank Holiday Madness!

With the May Bank Holiday we’ve been super busy. It was lovely to see lots of visitors out at the Fen, enjoying the good weather and spring wildlife that’s was on offer on the Sunday and Monday.

I spent the bank holiday weekend out with the animals. Having originally started at Wicken as the Volunteer Grazing Warden it was great to get to see the animals again, catching up with the horses I used to know as foals that are now having their own babies and relaxing with the cows is always one of my favourite things to do on a sunny day!

Some of the baby foals
Baby Monty!
Lois, Peter and I were at Reach Fair on Monday. We find Reach a really good fair to attend as we get to see lots of locals who use the wider nature reserve, and its nice to talk to them and get feedback on what we could do to make their visits more enjoyable. We were also making medals with the children, marking how many of the 50 things to do before your 11 ¾ they had already achieved and which was their favourite so far. Reach Fair is the first of a long list of fetes and fairs we attend over the summer, so keep an eye out for us at the local fairs!
Peter and I ready to go at Reach Fair

A big highlight of mine last week, was the cow going back onto Tubney Fen. After months of hard work to get the fencing stock proof we were able to let a local farmer put his cattle on to graze the southern end for us. We are now working to get the north side fenced in so the cattle can have access to the whole area and we can open up the gates across the middle of Tubney.
John and Pete finishing off the gates at Tubney