Tuesday, 3 March 2015

A bit of allsorts today

The Safari has been on the look out for signs of spring in the garden at Base Camp. The last few evenings we've been out with the torch to see if there were any Frogs in the pond, there weren't but we did find one of our Orfes (aka Ides) was sleeping in the shallows very close to the edge, a very vulnerable position as the local cats have often been seen on the stealth cam peering in to the water in the dead of night.
From Wiki..."The Ide reaches a maximum length of about 60–80 cm (23.5-31.5 inches) though the average size is about 40 cm (16 inches). The Ide reaches a weight of about 9 lb (4 kg)." Ours must be about 15/16 inches long or more now and we've had them over 16 years, they've even survived a house move!
The cat in the clip jumps to exactly where this fish was snoozing, although the clip is from last summer.

We didn't get much chance of any safari-ing yesterday but on the way home we stopped off at the flooded field near the nature reserve where the Green Sandpiper has been for about a week. Unfortunately we didn't have our camera or telescope with us so this is the best we could manage digi-binning it - good job it was in the closest corner of the flood.
Once back at Base Camp a look in the pond revealed the Frogs had indeed been active and left four clumps of spawn over on the far side.
This morning we were teaching rocks and stomes to Year 3 on the beach, lots of great finds but it was so so cold it must have been like torture for the poor wee ones. We had a our hands in a bucket of water to clean the sand of the stones so the youngsters could see the detail, not the best idea on a cold and very windy day like today. That stung!
We've had another go at lamping the pond this evening a couple more clumps of spawn have been added but so no sign of those slippery adult amphibians. An unusual sighting, we think, is the recently unfurled Water Lily leaf, there's another one about to reach the surface too. Is that right in the first week of March?
So there you have it a bit of spring springing in a couple of hundred words.
Where to next? We should be able to get a reasonable look at Patch 2 tomorrow.
In the meantime let us know who's prowling round the ponds in your outback.

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