Saturday, 5 December 2015

Brief then wet

The Safari is a tad soggy. Yesterday's sunshine was but an all too brief interlude in the succession of storms tazzing across the north Atlantic. It started raining as we were driving home from work yesterday evening and hasn't stopped since. Once this storm has passed there's another one due in two or three days. Already there is serious flooding all over the north of the country. They had a 1:1000 year flood in 2009, this one is bigger! It really is time to seriously rethink the land use in our uplands.
Late edit - if there have been two 1 in a 1000 floods in six years that should mean the next one won't be until the year 3010/11 give or take a few months, that should leave plenty of time to prepare. Somehow we feel the next one will be along well before that probably within  the next 10 years.
OK so there's not a lot that will stop water in today's quantities but we have to think about how to slow them down a bit.
The peat bogs must be undrained and allowed to rehydrate and start building up again, any drains above the in-bye should be stopped and then millions of trees have to be planted to slow the water through the ground and start building up organic soil again, a slow process but worth it in the end. There has to be adequate government/EU incentives for farmers/land owners to move away from sheep and into other more water-safe activities - maybe the insurance companies should start buying up land, be cheaper than paying out for losses and putting up premiums to almost affordable levels! Wonder if any of our glorious leaders at the climate Change summit in Paris are being briefed on the situation and contemplating doing anything about it? Thought not - it's all happening up north, needs for Oxfordshire and the Thames basin to be underwater every five years then they'd notice and be told to do summat about it!
As the world warms under the influence of increasing CO2 more moisture evaporates from the sea, water vapour is also a greenhouse gas so adding the the effect - then all that moist air meets a cold front from the Arctic and guess what cold air can't hold that amount of water so it all turns to rain - more rain than we've had before - - it can only get worse unfortunately.
We could barely see through the rain soaked windows to watch the feeders this morning. A male Chaffinch was first bird on and then we set a random time an hour or so hence to do our BTO Goldfinch Feeding Survey - hope you're all doing it too - but would a Goldfinch appear in the dire conditions, if they did would they be able to land on the feeder as it was swinging wildly inn the howling gale...the wind is dropping now but still gusting to 55mph (85-90kph)
The twig balancing sunny seed pecking female Blackbird arrived and stayed for many minutes then a Collared Dove came down and did the same. Minutes before the survey time was due a Goldfinch was there barely visible through the rain soaked glass, thankfully it stayed for the duration but it didn't have any friends...who cares it's another positive result...we have to say that negative results are equally important as well. 
From there the weather deteriorated even further and we gave up trying to see through the windows and went shopping with Wifey and so ended any further hope of safari-ing for the rest of the day - yes it was that bad!
We had a call from our Extreme Photographer down in south west Wales the other day. He's been keeping an eye on his Palmate Newts. They still haven't started to go in to hibernation and he was ringing to tell us he'd just had a record count in his garden of 32. Two of them were sat together on the top of the tallest plant stem on his small lawn. What are they doing? Did they climb up together like that or did one climb and then the other, but what's it all about?
Where to next? We're going to try to  venture out tomorrow got a cuple of possibilities that might just bring our 200th species of the year up.
In the meantime let us know who's out getting a soaking in your outback

1 comment:

Warren Baker said...

Its all so bloody dismal Davyman, I used to enjoy the winter weather, but now-a-days its just rain and gales :-(