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Latest updates and news from the project

The second collection day - Richards Diary part 8

Thursday 22nd April

On the second collection day we return to the northern part of the biosphere. We pass through a very intensive dairy area to get there, and Lutz points out huge maize fields, all waiting to be ploughed and planted. The maize is very attractive to cranes, especially in the autumn, but there’s very little other food once the maize has run out.

Collection day one - Richards Diary part 7

Wednesday 21st April

Beate and Eberhard arrive early. We pack carefully, making sure to remember all the important pieces of kit – portable incubator, crocodile clips to connect the incubator to the truck cigarette socket, a backup battery just in case we have problems with the truck’s socket, rubber gloves and sanitation gel for handling the eggs. We all have rubber wellies or longer waders for deeper water nest sites.

Crane Academy

Have been working the last couple of weeks with a great bunch of resilient crane volunteers to finish off the release enclosure / crane academy on the Levels and Moors.   Electric fencing is now all up, two 40 x 40 m top nets are sewn together, and one of the two netted pens is fully fitted out.

A visit to Angermunde - Richards Diary part 6

Tuesday 20th April

We are all up at a respectable 8am, despite the late night. Nigel goes quickly down to the incubator room where he spends most of the day checking the equipment to make sure that everything’s ready to receive the first eggs.

Tree Sparrows and final preparations- Richards Diary part 5

Monday 19th April continued...

Roland prepares the incubator room - Richards Diary part 4

Monday 19th April continued...Back at the mill Roland starts to prepare the incubator room (IR) downstairs. It’s critical the IR is as clean as possible to ensure the crane eggs are kept free from contamination. We start by laying down a large polythene sheet on the floor and duck taping it to the wall. This keeps dust from the floor away from the incubators. We set up a couple of tables – one for the three backup yellow incubators and one to be the preparation table for when the eggs arrive back from the field.

The lake and forest around Glambecker Mill - Richards Diary part 3

Monday 19th April

Roland and I are up early to sample the delights of the lake and forest around Glambecker Mill. There is something special about the first day at a new place and the birders’ instincts to get out early are impossible to resist. We wander expectantly around Glambecker Lake. A deep croak reminds me of the ravens which pass over our house at home. We spot a pair of goldeneye on the lake and later on the old carp ponds. Goldeneye breed at the mill, giving it a Scandinavian feel.