Lizzie Bruce, reserve warden at The Lodge writes her first blog!
Nowadays many employers allow their staff to get out the office, have a break from their day job and volunteer for a day for another organisation. These are commonly known as corporate away days. So far this winter, we have played host to Parcelforce, Barclays Bank, Elsevier and held two work parties for the staff based up at HQ. Much of the winter work programme is targeted at heathland restoration on the are...a we refer to as the ‘New Heath’ where we hope in the not too distant future to have breeding woodlarks, nightjars and Dartford warblers. The main aim is remove the birch and pine regrowth allowing the heather to grow and to also create areas of bare ground; this will create the varied structure that is required for woodlark and invertebrates. After a brief introduction to the reserve and the work the RSPB does, it is time to get to work. By working together large areas of scrub is removed and piled up ready for burning. One the occasions when the wind blew in the right direction a good fire was going and lovely marshmallows toasted. There was definitely a competitive edge to some teams who wanted to outperform the previous group- I can say though that there was very little difference in the areas they had cleared. Corporate away days have allowed us to receive over £1000 through a combination of donations and equipment for the reserve. So far it appears everyone goes away happy and with many inspired to revisit with their families.
Image credit; Lizzie Bruce
A lesser-spotted woodpecker was seen today, in the same area this bird favoured in the spring, at the bottom of the pylon line on the Sandy Ridge trail. The bird was amongst a large tit flock, a good way to search and to track down this scarce bird in the winter.
Have a look at this amazing clip on youtube, of migrating birds stopping off on a research vessel across the Baltic sea.