Watch The Birdie.

28 February 2019

February saw the completion of another large expanse of hedge restoration, which stretched from Carnbee to Arncroach, with a big area being planted on Kellie Law. It will take the Beech hedges a few years to establish but the benefits to the wildlife will be worth the wait! The transformation that Balcaskie is making to the landscape has been commented on by many of the walkers that we see throughout the year.

This month we took part in ‘The Big Farmland Bird Count’ which is organised by Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust. It sounds like something that would take a long time to do, but in reality, our part in the study only took around 30 minutes to complete. The survey is a great way to highlight if there are any areas of our countryside that we can improve on. With our Estate stretching from all the way from the coastline to more inland, we carried out the survey at three separate locations. It showed that within the short distances between survey sites, there is a massive diversity of birds in each location, which is fantastic! Some of the birds sited were Tree Sparrow, Yellowhammer, Grey Partridge, Skylark, Pigeon, Oystercatcher, Curlew, Sparrow Hawk, Linnet, Buzzard, Chaffinch and Corn Bunting to name a few, all in good numbers.

With this recent and unexpected good weather, it has given us the time to tidy up the leftover branches and brash from the tree felling that was carried out in Sandyriggs wood back in November 2017. To clear such an expanse of debris in the woodland, we used a method of controlled burning whilst ensuring the local Fire Service were aware prior to us starting this process. Some of the areas within the woodland took a few days to completely burn out. I would like to thank the members of the public for their concern and vigilance shown during this time.

March is set to be another busy month with us taking party in a study run by RSPB to monitor the impact Mob Grazing has on ground nesting birds, particularly the wader variety such as Curlew, Corn Bunting and Lapwing. We are looking for volunteers to help with the surveying on the Estate, so if this is something you are interested in please contact Deborah Ryan at the Estate Office or by email on dryan@balcaskie.com

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