Tuesday, 7 September 2010

A Walk around the Big Ponds

Another of these blustery, autumnal days: I walked round to the south side of the two ponds. Here is a small Norway spruce, felled by the beavers


This is rather curious. The stump is throwing out some coppice shoots, but nothing seems to be happening higher up.

A muddy patch, where beavers have been walking about. The webbed hind feet are very clear.

A fair number of the trees that have been cut around the ponds are hanging on their neighbours. The usual trick to solve the problem of the hanging tree is to try and cut it further up in the hope that this will release the rest of the tree. In this case the stem has come free of the stump, but is hanging anyway.

Or did the beaver start felling the tree lower down anyway and then change its mind and begin again higher up? What a lot of energy spent to little avail for the present. Some time soon, though, I guess that the part of the tree that is caught up will drop. Perhaps today's winds will be enough to shift it.

Looking north-east across the Curling Pond. the sedge is turning.

The lodge in the canal between the ponds.

I was delighted to see some of these fungi.

The view north-eastish across the Big Pond. Rafts of sedge in the foreground.

Another Norway spruce down! These trees, their roots drowned by the raised water level in the pond, have been dead for several years. From vertical Dead Wood, these trees are on the way to a change of status as horizontal Large Woody Debris.

Hugh Chalmers sent me a wonderful document, published by the Staffordshire Wildlife Trust, about woody debris in water courses. As he said, it might have been written by beavers.

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