In Search of a Murmuration
Leaving Basil behind in the kitchen, I drove to Attenborough Nature Reserve just outside Long Eaton, this afternoon.
Starlings have been murmurating there for the past few years between November and January. If I didn't go today, it would be pointless. Earlier this week there was a report that the number of starlings had fallen from 3000 to under 1000.
I waited in Corbett's tall hide overlooking Clifton Pond with several others waiting for something to happen around sunset. There was movement but largely big birds such as crows and jackdaws settling down to roost. The remaining starlings had split into small groups.
It was getting dark and I wanted to get back to the car before it was really dark and before I risked slipping on a muddy pathway. Of course, I'd only gone one hundred metres before all the birds ascended and swooped around . Still not so many starlings. It was good to get out.
Basil was fine when I got back. He didn't complain too much. I'd have loved to have been able to take him but 1) he isn't allowed in the hides and 2) he can't go in the Visitor Centre which I need to do to go to the loo.
They have relented slightly. Dogs are now allowed on the café balcony overlooking one of the ponds.
Attenborough Nature Reserve is seeking help to buy out the land. It needs £1 million. If you can help, please do so. It's a wonderful natural resource.