The Safari is very pleased to be associated with A Focus on Nature; what a great bunch they are and inspiring not only to their own generation but us oldies too. Please read the blogs, the quality of writing and subject matters are excellent and thought provoking, keep up with all the news on Facebook and watch the films they produce...a short one of which is down at the bottom of this post. They are a breath of fresh air and have encouraged us to have a much more positive outlook for the future of our fantastic wildlife, they are all so committed. There is also a junior section were the enthusiasm is if anything even higher!
We came to be involved by spotting something on Twitter or a blog somewhere, Mark Avery's? about older naturalists mentoring the next generation and after a chat to Wifey who encouraged us to take the plunge we sent an email off. Lo and behold we were accepted and our safari down to London to meet our 'mentoree' we'd been paired with, TP, was it's first manifestation, hopefully there'll be more opportunities to explore her part of the world and get her traveling northwards to safari-land. It's quite a responsibility but something that is very close to our heart so we'll do our very best.
Yesterday we had a late start and met our Extreme Photographer at the nature reserve where the plan was to get to grips with a bit of voluntary work but we got side tracked in the hide by a small group of Teal attracted much closer than normal by some wheat that a Bird Club member had thrown down on the mud.
Again the light was against us but we gave it a go anyway - aren't they beautiful.
It's coming from beyond the farm but we couldn't work out exactly where - that amount of black smoke is deffo illegal.
After getting all Tealed out it was time to get down to the feeding station and turn our Extreme Photographer into an Extreme Sickler and get the vegetation slashed down and raked up. Poor RL had to do all the grafting cos of our hands - still we don't mind supervising!
We'd brought some small feeders and found some of the old vandalised ones that could be repaired so there is now food available and just in time, there's supposed to be some weather on the way.
Once we'd finished and locked up we made our way back towards the hide and saw several birders on the vantage point for the reed-beds...only one thing they were waiting there for - a Bittern. we joined them but had no luck after half an hour and gave up - we shouldn't have done it flew across the reeds five minutes after we'd left. Perhaps far more unusual than the Bittern was the bat, probably a Pipistrelle, that flew over our heads.
Checking the stealth-cam we had a big surprise - guess which way the pond is - - - exit stage right!
Our walk with Frank gave us the Peregrine asleep on his usual roosting ledge and just before reaching the gate at Base Camp a large moth flew close by, pretty sure at this time of year there's not a lot of choice so either December Moth or Mottled Umber...now if we'd have had the net we could easily have caught it but who in their right mind carries a butterfly net while walking the dog three weeks before Christmas...maybe tomorrow!Please have a look at the film it's a bit better than our effort above.
In the meantime let us know who's been removing the vegetation in your outback