The large scale conservation work has begun at vane farm, but the large yellow digger has not put our birds off.
This morning an osprey flew over the reserve and acted like it may be going to catch a fish. Though it didn't, it was still great to see the bird hovering and swooping. It will not be long until the ospreys migrate back to Africa, though August is a great month to see them fishing over the loch and reserve.
Another smaller, acrobatic raptor also visited the reserve today, giving visitor a rather unique view of a perching peregrine, in fact, two of them! The first landed on one of the floods islands and it was closely followed by another, on a fence post towards the back of the reserve.
Apart from the raptors there are small groups of tufted duck, pochard, gadwall, mallard and a large group of feeding curlews on the reserve and in Vane bay. Our feeding area is full of activity as loads of greenfinches, siskins, chaffinches and a redpoll try to get to the food.
Sorry folks but there will be no Satuday blog for two weeks, as I am away on holiday. There will probably some thing exciting happening when I'm away (just my luck) so still keep on looking at the recent sightings page.
Michty me August awready, it’s been a quick year again or is it jist me gettin auld? Aye likely it is. Weather still a bit cheengeable no been awfa great at times really, mibee this month micht be a bitty better? Here’s hopin!
The breedin oan the reserve is ended noo and it’s moult time fur a lotta birds post breedin. Skulkin around hidin or if seen an identification nightmare if yer nae awfa shair whit yer lookin at.even fur the so called experts at times,whit colour wiz it ? “well it wiz sorta broon” the joys “o” bird watchin at this time “o” year ne’er they will be back tae normal; finery come the autumn then yer id chances increase. Still a load “o” youngsters gawn aboot tho so watch oot fur the gallous antics at yer feeders. Especially the raucous young steckies (starlings tae yaze the proper name)
The new wetland work will hiv startit when ye read this so it will be digger city fur a wee while but shid be worth it in the end. If yiv been in at Vane since the work began ye’ll hae nae doot fund oot that we hiv closed the access path tae the second “n” third hides. It’s awe tae dae wi “ Health “n” Safety stuff really as ye will hiv workit oot fur yersel. Please bear wi us and as shin as we kin gie ye safe access again we will, in the meantime we hiv reduced oor entry charges if yer no RSPB or WEX members tae yin new poond per person as a compensatory gesture. So if ye hinny been in before why nae come alang “n” see whit yiv been missin cannae be bad fur that money, or as the tanned antiquey chappie oan the box says “ Cheap as chips” .....bargain! We will of coorse quadruple the charges efter the work tae help pey fur it awe! Na kiddin jist ma wee joke but they will go back tae normal yince the works finished and hide access resumes.
Bein a bit mair serious tho kin a say thankyou to readers who give us support by being RSPB members it’s your donations and membership money which helps us to fund these projects throughout Scotland, 91p in every pound you give us goes directly to our conservation work so we dinnae waste it cos we cannae afford tae!! . So if ye “r” yin we really do appreciate yer support and a big ta fae awe the birds “n” ither beasties fur the nice new hoose!!
Noo maist “o” ye micht no ken him ither thin the time a telt ye aboot him drappin in the pond thon time, the loon in the cartoon mind “o” him noo? Well he’s kinda behind the scenes a bit,that’s Shaw speak fur stuck at a computer maist “o” the time tho we did let him escape ootside tae dae a bit “o” hands oan teachin at times. No enough tho accordin tae him tho! Onywey Sandy Howe Vanes Educational Development Officer fur the last couple “o” years hiz decidit tae further his career by ...eh .. retirin! He hiz done a lot “o” good stuff developin different educational programmes fur local kids in the area as well as makin his mark at Vane so we wish him well. He will noo be makin his mark oan the gairden at the hoose and getting up tae ither things nae doot so “ Cheerio Headmaster “ it’s the best joab yiv ever hid ! no shair aboot the pay tho but man ye cannae hiv everythin kin ye?
Ta ta till next time,
Summer migrants are starting to work their way back down through the country to their wintering grounds in Africa. At Vane we've seen an increased number of ospreys over Loch Leven and the reserve within the last few days. At the moment, adult and juvenile ospreys are leaving their nesting areas and heading south. It's a gradual process, they may spend several days or maybe even weeks in some areas on their way over to the continent.
The wader passage will also begin soon and we'll be keeping an eye out for greenshank, common sandpipers, ruff, godwits, dunlin and whimbrel amongst others.
Swifts are some of the first summer migrants to leave. Swallows will be here for few more weeks even into October before they'll be thinking about going home.
It's an exciting time to visit!
For the first time a wee red' yin has been spotted at Vane Farm! A few visitors and staff have seen it this week so keep an eye out on your next visit to Vane. Apparently the picnic area and surrounds are a hot spot...
Today we were lucky enough to have two fishing specialists on the reserve, a pair of ospreys. The first bird dived into one of our scrapes and flew out with a fish, it then ate its well earned dinner on the wall that runs down the wetland. Whilst I was in the wild flower meadow, less than an hour ago, another osprey was flying over the loch towards Kinnross. There was also a buzzard using the same wall as the osprey, along with another bird hunting on St Serfs island. Apart from the wonderful raptors, there are some mallard, tufted duck, gadwall, three little grebes and a small flock of curlews on the flood. On Loch Leven the number of ducks have definitely dropped from last week. though there are still plenty of tufted duck, pochard, gadwall and great crested grebes. At our bird feeders we have our usual selection of tits and finches, along with an increasingly regular yellow hammer.
Our willow warblers, up Vane Hill, are still singing loudly along with the surprisingly loud call of thousands of grass hoppers. When I was walking throught the woodland a bright linnet was perched on one of the higher branches of a birch tree. In our wild flower meadows there are many species of butterfly including meadow brown, ringlet, green veined, small white and small tortise shell. Next to our teaching hide we have two ponds and today I decided to take a closer look in them, I was shocked by how much I found, from caddis fly larvae to young frogs.
Check the blog next week to find out what turns up at vane!