Saturday, 22 January 2011

Not wasting time!

Just to prove that we don't mess about on the bird reserve on a Thursday, here are before and after photographs of last Thursday's efforts.  Three of us got about half of this done in the morning, then after lunch four more arrived to finish off.  We were done by about 3pm and feeling pretty pleased with ourselves.
To start with, I was in charge of the fire, so spent some time collecting dry twigs so that after coffee we'd be in a position to start the fire and not have to charge about looking for kindling.  Fortunately there was plenty nearby, so I soon had a decent-sized stack ready.  Then I helped out pollarding the willows and cutting up the waste, dividing it into stuff to be burned immediately and logs to be stacked.  Not sure whether the stacked logs are regarded as a habitat or whether they get ferried out of the reserve to be used as firewood.  We just left them.  After coffee I lit my fire and I'm glad to say that it got going straightaway and we soon had a decent blaze.

This last photo is just of a hawthorn stump which the warden had chopped down recently, and I thought the effect was rather attractive.  Although it will undoubtedly send up shoots in the spring, the deer will almost certainly eat all the new growth, and eventually the stump will die.  That's why we were pollarding the willows, rather than coppicing them.  (Both pollarding and coppicing are described here on the Bluestem Nursery website, in case you have no idea what I'm talking about!)

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