Regular visitors will have noticed the gutter leaking in Goosander Hide for sometime and some of the windows had become difficult to open, the cause was not a blockage but the whole hide had slumped due to a crack in one of the supporting timbers underneath the hide. The solution was simple with the right contractor and the right heavy machinery – jack up the hide and insert supports! While we were by the hide, I also got him to pull a heavy, silt filled tractor tyre out of Ibsley Water with his digger.
This year little ringed plover failed to breed on the reserve, probably due to a variety of reasons such as predation by corvids and foxes, disturbance by fisherman but also because their favoured shingle, bare ground habitat had become very weedy and over grown. After discussions with various knowledgeable experts we decided to take action and mechanically turn over (known as rucking in the trade) the shingle to get rid of any weeds and see if this improves things for the plovers.
So our heroic man and his digger spent the afternoon rucking the ground. The results look a bit rough and ready but the birds seem interested already with several meadow pipits, coots and even a buzzard seen feeding on and around the disturbed ground this morning.
N.B The title of this blog refers to the excellent Neil Young song Rocking in the free world.