Sunday, 24 August 2014

24th of August: Into the water

This Wednesday, we were alerted by the ferrymen that a flare had been let off near the wreck marker. Attending the scene immediately, a man on a dory was spotted. The engine had flooded and the boat was on its side, the man clinging to the railings. The large, choppy waves luckily pushed the boat ashore and we were able to help anchor the boat and take the man, Jamie, to the Lifeboat House for a cup of tea. The coastguards were also involved, attending the scene promptly.

With choppy seas continuing for the rest of the week, it became clear that launching the boat at high tide was too risky. Instead, some rollers were borrowed to try and get the boat down to the water at low tide.

At first, it was a struggle to lift the boat onto the rollers. But eventually, with the aid of some blocks, we got the boat moving.
Using the quad to toe it, we slowly moved it towards the water, collecting the rollers from the back and moving them to the front to keep it moving towards the water.
Jamie and Mark (the owner) were then able to walk the boat around to the channel where they were then toed back to Morston.

At the start of the week, the last Common Tern chick of the season fledged. This was the only tern chick left on the Point and we were delighted to see it taking flight.
 Common Terns with chick earlier in the season

The Swallow chicks under the Old Lifeboat House roof were not so lucky. A week after hatching, the parents sadly abandoned, the urge to migrate taking over. The weather was very autumnal this week, perhaps causing the adults to leave. This was their second clutch, so at least they had fledged five chicks earlier on in the summer.

The only active nest currently on the Point is that of a Wood Pigeon, in the garden. Whilst rummaging amongst the brambles to inspect the nest, a number of Large White butterfly larvae were noted. One took a liking to our National Trust clothing and clung on.
This week's moth trap produced several Large Yellow Underwings, Straw Underwings and Archer's Darts.

In migrant bird news, the first Whinchat, Willow Warblers and Garden Warblers of the autumn were seen on the Point this week.

Our latest low tide seal count of the West Sands was conducted on the Friday. There were 24 Common Seals and this season's highest count of Greys so far, an impressive 1,058.

- Ajay and Paul
(photography by Sarah)

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