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Riff Raff Diary – January 2019

Published on: 20 Jan, 2019
Updated on: 20 Jan, 2019

Riff Raff Cottage and Weir

Riverbank tales from the local St Catherine’s lengthsman and weir keeper

by Robert Craig

At the beginning of November I was unfortunate enough to break my wrist.

With my arm in plaster, this meant that I was unable to carry out the annual winter cut back of vegetation on my length. Normally I would aim to have this job completed by the end of December.

So during January, my priority wilI be to catch up with the winter cutback of towpath vegetation along my length.

Gorse in bloom

The relatively mild winter thus far means that there are still plants in flower to be seen such as the meadow sweet, and in the surrounding meadows the gorse is covered in bright yellow flowers.

A local redwing

The sky has been busy too with good numbers of redwings to be seen. These handsome birds have travelled all the way from Fennoscandia, Iceland and the Faroes to visit us.

There are also flocks of goldfinches looking stunning when viewed with a clear blue sky for a backdrop.

Goldfinch feeding on one of its favourite foods, teasel seeds

The other day on one such occasion I was watching a pair of buzzards soaring high above me when a red Kite joined them. The sight of these birds with the sun highlighting their markings and colouring was a real treat.

Wishing you a very Happy New Year.

See you by the river.

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