Day 18 – 30 Days Wild

At the end of May I became an Ambassador for The Rivers Trust, so I decided to go sit next to a stretch of the River Rea, on the edge of Gannow Wood.

#30DaysWild

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Day 11 – 30 Days Wild

Today I have decided to share a wild moment from my past 🐦 😊

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The Wild Side: WWT Welney

Two years ago my friend Jamie Wyver and I visited the wonderful Welney Wetland Centre, near Wisbech in the east of England (Norfolk).  We were there filming for episode five of our TV series, The Wild Side, which was commissioned and broadcast by Cambridge TV (now called That’s Cambridge).  The main subject of course, was the beautiful Bewick’s and Whooper Swans, as they migrate there each year in their thousands from Artic Russia and Iceland.  You’ll see in the last part of the episode (below), I was given the amazing opportunity to perform a floodlit feed!

For more episodes of The Wild Side click here.

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Upton Warren: Eurasian Curlew

The now classified as Near Threatened on the IUCN Red List, UK Amber and Red List species under the Birds of Conservation Concern review and as a Priority Species in the UK Biodiversity Action Plan, Eurasian Curlew are still holding on at Upton Warren in the landlocked county of Worcestershire in the West Midlands region, and they can be seen throughout autumn and winter, roosting at The Flashes most evenings.

For waders they’re large and tall, approx the size of female a Pheasant – making them the largest European wading bird.  Their haunting call (‘Cur-lee’) is unmistakable – it’s one of my favourite bird calls – it can be heard from February through to July on its breeding grounds; wet grasslands, farmland, heath and moorlands.  From July onwards coastal numbers start to build up and peak in January.

Curlews feed on worms, shrimps and shellfish.  The largest concentrations of them are found at Morecambe Bay, the Solway Firth, the Wash and the Dee, plus, the Severn, Humber and Thames estuaries.  Their greatest breeding numbers are found in north Wales, the Pennines, the southern uplands and east Highlands of Scotland and the Northern Isles.

The agricultural intensification (e.g drainage and reseeding) of upland farmland and moorland – plus the afforestation of moorland – is a big factor in the decline of their breeding population.

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Video

Wildlife Monthly: Bewick’s Swan

If you’ve not seen or heard of Wildlife Monthly;Β click here.

This month’s instalment features one of our large feathery winter visitors from the high Arctic;Β the Bewick’s Swan. Part of the “Wild Swans” family, they’re not sedentary but are free-roaming and make a lot more noise than Mute Swans do – with their load trumpeting calls which often mark their arrival.Β  They are also famously known for their individual black and yellow beak markings – allowing each bird to be identified and studied, which the staff at WWT Slimbridge in Gloucestershire, have been doing since the 1960’s.Β  They’re named after the celebrated bird illustrator, Thomas BewickΒ – and funnily enough, the yellow on a Bewick’s Swan’s beak forms the letter B!

To see my video on the Whooper Swan (another member of the Wild Swan family)Β click here.

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