Wednesday, 24 November 2010

So, what do you do in the winter?

A question oft asked of us rangers, and I'm sure people think that we just sit around twiddling our thumbs - but that couldn't be further from the truth. There may not be quite so much wildlife or so many visitors around, but this means we have time to carry out all the other tasks that are involved in managing a nature reserve. Usually, the winter is over and the new season has begun long before we have got to the bottom of our "to do" lists!

Last week was a case in point. I had a site visit from an NTS Nature Conservation Advisor to review our biological monitoring on the Reserve; an architect to advise us on repairing the boat house on the Mire Loch; and an NTS Rural Surveyor to discuss grazing management and applying for funding from the Scottish Rural Development Programme. And that was just on one day! The rest of the week was taken up with footpath work with our weekly volunteers; writing and giving a talk to a local WRI; having a site visit with several specialist footpath contractors so that they can tender for carrying out work on the coast path; putting the final touches to next year's budget; and having a site visit with Scottish Natural Heritage to seek permission to carry out the proposed footpath work on our highly designated reserve. Phew!

In the mean time, Georgia is busily beavering away, putting together funding applications, as part of her role is to raise funds to support her post. She is employed on a fixed term contract dependent on funding, and the current funding package finishes at the end of next no pressure there then! So if anyone has a spare few quid, Georgia can put it to good use!

No rest for the wicked, as they say. But it keeps us out of mischief! Also quite a lot of weather around last week too, the picture above was taken on Friday at Burnmouth Harbour (on the reserve, not at Burnmouth!). There was no wind at all that day, but it had been blowing an absolute hoolie the two previous days - spectacular!

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