Sightings at Drakelow

The latest news at Drakelow from Tom Cockburn.

DRAKELOW NATURE RESERVE: W/E Sunday 23rd February 2020. A visit was made on Saturday 22nd February to assess the flood situation. The River Trent was back within its banks but several of the reserve’s paths were still under water and the rest extremely slippery. The depth of water at the flood’s peak was extremely high – the chest high tide mark on the Warden’s hut door bears testimony to this. Several trees have been brought down but all have fallen away from the paths. A wood panel has been dislodged on the way up to the North Hide but it is passable with care. Needless to say, the wildfowl have practically deserted the area; such is the high water level. However, on the 23rd a drake Mandarin was present in the North Pool and the best duck counts were of 40 Tufted Duck and ten Shovelers. A Chiffchaff was singing near the RWPH where there was also a pair of Buzzards. Shortly before sun set, on the Saturday visit, the highlight was the uncountable numbers of Jackdaws that were swarming round the hairpin bend area, across the solar farm and into the defunct power station site. When witnessing this spectacle it made one wonder what all the fuss was about in Hitchcock’s film The Birds! Finally, if you do decide to visit please, be extra careful as there was further heavy, overnight rain on the 22nd/23rd leaving the paths very slippery. With thanks to JKC, KW and AG.