Saturday, November 23, 2013

RSPB Futurescapes

At the recent AGM of the Friends of the Tye, we invited Rachel Whitfield to come and do a talk for us about the RSPB Futurescapes.

The idea of Futurescape is to bring together various groups, organisations, authorities and communities involved with land management, conservation and the environment to expand wildlife habitats from the existing fragmented areas to larger areas that will support a greater diversity and link up or provide 'corridors' between them.

Chalk grassland is now one of the rarest habitats we have and 80% of it has already disappeared.  Projects such as the RSPB Futurescapes and Natural England's South Downs Way Ahead - Nature Improvement Areas (NIA) will help to increase and improve the existing chalk grassland.

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Saturday, November 16, 2013

November sunshine on Telscombe Tye - Day 2

And a few days later, back on the Tye - same area and much the same but getting more done.  The bonfire site from Wednesday was warm enough to get going without having to start from scratch.

The area looks a lot better and pushing back and clearing more scrub, much of which is hawthorn, blackthorn and elder along with plenty of bramble.  The tree in the picture was originally surrounded by scrub.

We've cleared a large area since the beginning of the year and it's a potentially great for chalk grassland wildflowers.  There were quite a large variety of species over the Summer and once the scrub is under control even more species will arrive along with other wildlife.

There was a shooting party on the nearby land and with the guns firing off, pheasant and partridge were taking shelter along the edges of the Tye and flying over the nearby fields out of range.

We also spotted a pair of buzzards and a kestrel as well as a robin around the area being cut and goldfinch flying over.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

November Sunshine on the Tye - Day 1

A joint task with the FoTT and South Downs Volunteer Rangers and the first mid-week task we've run.

Volunteers scrub clearing on Telscombe Tye

Working on the area we started clearing at the beginning of the year.  Cutting back some of the regrowth and working on expanding and clearing yet more scrub.

I just popped down around lunchtime to see how they were getting on and to get some fresh air and sunshine.

Saturday, November 02, 2013

Autumn sunshine at Pulborough Brooks

A lovely sunny and not too cold a day for a visit to Pulborough Brooks.  Despite the fact it's November there are plenty of leaves on the trees and even a few butterflies around.

Plenty of duck around but few waders.  We did manage to see the delightful Snipe in front of Nettley's hide - well hidden the reeds but no sign of the Jack Snipe that had been spotted earlier in the week.

Great view of a young Marsh Harrier over the ditches on the North Brooks which did get pretty close and the peregrine was up in her usual perch, which is always a delight.

Finished off at the South Brooks viewpoint with distant sightings of what was finally decided to be a green sandpiper.  I spot it and then leave the 'experts' to decide what it is.