Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Common Tern rafts Launched

Well, after many man hours of work on the Tern rafts, Wednesday morning was the day we were going to launch two of the four rafts which Andy Smith and I had made, onto Thornton Reservoir. With the the help of Jim Graham, Ben Croxtall, Russel Parry, Roger West and Graham Middleton - the latter of whom allows us to use his farm to make the rafts on, and who also provided the materials for the rafts' anchors, the gravel for the rafts' floors and the transport from the farm to the reservoir, a sincere thank-you from LROS - and hopefully the Terns too! The weather was perfect - the sun was shining, and no wind - ideal for the rafts to be launched; from start to finish, both rafts were in position after only a couple of hours  -as they say' many hands make light work' so a big thank-you also to all the volunteers who helped along the way.
 The above image is the first raft loaded on Grahams trailer ready for the journey to the reservoir
 All the lads after lifting it from the trailer slowly and lowering it down in to the reservoir. I'm now hoping it floats
 Ben looking the part in his waders with the first raft now in the water, and waiting for the gravel to be loaded on to the rafts' floor
 Russel, Andy and Roger towing the first raft out out into position - Russel picking the short straw,having to do the rowing
 This is what the rafts are anchored down with - a car tyre filled with concrete, with a chain concreted in, then a rope between the raft and the chain. We use two - one at either end of the raft
 The first raft in position which was slightly listing as there was too much gravel at one end, but it was soon rectified by just equaling out the gravel. You can see on the above image and below, there are some ridge tiles - these are used for shelters for the chicks

 The second one in position, all anchored down. Now both rafts are just waiting for their tenants - so fingers crossed, soon there will be breeding Common Terns on Thornton Reservoir!  I will of course keep you all informed as to how the rafts are doing; as for the other two rafts we made, it is yet undecided where they will be sited
As always thanks for stopping by and any comments are most welcomed.


  1. Cracking stuff gents, give yourselves a big pat on the back!

  2. Great post, thanks so much for sharing. You have a lovely blog and your header and background are stunning. Warm greetings from Montreal, Canada. :)

  3. Thanks for your kind comments Linda!!

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