Saturday, June 23, 2007

Stort Navigation Evening Walk

Well I guess the night walk was cancelled. I got to Spellbrook Lock just before 8:30, but there were no cars I recognised, and no-one was waiting. After I while I thought I might walk to Tednambury Marsh to see if I could see anyone further down the river. The marsh was filled with singing birds – a Song Thrush in a dead tree, a Greenfinch doing its display flight, and Reed Buntings chasing each other. A couple of Sedge Warblers sat out on tall stems and sang, allowing a close approach in the way birds do when they can see you haven’t brought your camera.

Seeing no-one, I went back up to the lock, past a couple of narrow boats with the occupants sat out, and the fishermen setting up their poles. Then up towards Thorley Wash. A Grey Wagtail, then quiet until the footbridge when the Groppers were singing. It was difficult to pin down where they were, but I thought three birds? An alarm rang by the bridge, and one of the young lads down there ran off to his rod and hauled in a large Carp. It was a beautiful fish, lovely markings with a very dark back. It weighed in at 8lbs which seemed to underwhelm them. After the obligatory photo it was put back. They had wondered what the reeling sound from the tree behind them was.

Back down to the lock, and by now the light was fading. There was a carpet of flies on the navigation, and stacks of flies visible over the tops of all the trees. I sat by the lock and thought how peaceful it all was which is obviously ludicrous as it’s right under the flightpath to Stansted not two miles away, next to a busy railway line and has an A road in close proximity.
At 10:30 the trees were now just silhouettes and the hoped for bats had not appeared, so I went home.

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