Sunday 15 February 2015

Tern Raft Launch

On Saturday we launched the first of the 3 rafts that we have built over the last few weeks. It was going on a small piece of water at Church Farm, where Andy and myself had built them. Graham Middlebrook, the land owner, had offered his services - and his JCB - in order to make launching the raft that much easier. The raft will only be a short distance from Thornton Resevoir, where there are no places for Common Terns to nest, but Andy does see them flying over the piece of water where the Tern raft will be sited, so fingers crossed they find the raft and set up home on it!
 Above is Graham transporting the raft to the small lake.........making it look easy
 Lowering the raft over the Sand Martin wall with the JCB made the job much easier.
 The raft finally touches the water and Andy is elated it floats - I myself had no worries what so ever!
 Andy pulling the raft around into position with the 15mm rope
 The raft in its' final position on the lake...... fingers crossed the Terns find it!
We have secured this raft with 2 ropes from either side, as its only a small piece of water and it is on private land. They are normally put into position, then 2 anchors are used to keep the raft in its' place

Saturday 7 February 2015

Raft update

This is Andy - just finishing bolting the perspex sides on to the raft; these sides do a few things - they stop the Tern chicks falling off the platform and perishing, they allow observers to see what's happening on the raft from the shore line, they stop predation - mainly from Mink, and also stop ducks getting onto the raft, as they would  tread over eggs and small Tern chicks
So this is the completed raft, apart from the 50mm of gravel that goes on when we float the raft out,which will be in the few weeks. I will keep you posted on how they are doing.
As always thanks for stopping by