Tuesday, 22 June 2010

My first day of idlness!

Actually, I've not been idle at all, I've been quite busy!

First I decided to email Wicken Fen about volunteering. Then took a quick squint online to see what technical author jobs might be available, followed by 45 mins on the phone registering for job seeker's allowance at the Job Centre. This afternoon I went over to Letchworth Job Centre for an interview where the registration process was completed.

By the time that was done I'd had a reply from Wicken Fen to say they were overflowing with volunteers, what with all the warm sunny weather, so I emailed the RSPB at Ouse Fen, actually not far from Bar Hill where I used to work. The RSPB website didn't show any vacancies at Fowlmere, whereas Ouse Fen did.

But then I did what I'd wanted to do all day; I went back to Fowlmere Bird Reserve, bearing binoculars and camera, bird book and insect book, and spent a happy couple of hours watching wildlife.

This is the view from one of the hides, and although I didn't see much from here today, I know I'll be back and will see lots as time goes by.

I did see, at other points around the nature trail:
several Emperor dragonflies (Anax imperator)
a willow warbler
a reed warbler
lots of long-tailed tits
a common sandpiper
various ducks
a black cap
what might have been a female golden oriole.
Edit: actually much more likely to have been a juvenile green woodpecker.

This latter I saw three times, but didn't manage to get a decent view. It was about the size of a collared dove and had lightish brown feathers with yellow flashes. It had a harsh cark! cark! cark! alarm call and flew like a magpie - 5 or 6 flaps followed by a short glide. Golden orioles are summer visitors, so it's not impossible, and the book says they're greenish, which is not a million miles from the pale brown I thought I saw.

Back at home I found emails from both Ouse Fen and Fowlmere Bird Reserve, so have opted for Fowlmere, which of course, was my first thought anyway. They have a maintenance session on Thursday, so I'll be busy that day!

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