20th February 2018

Today was the try-out for the second sit~spot. I chose to get up early and get there as soon as I could. To the left of the bridge, this spot is much more open than the last place and I have already seen and heard lots of activity here: badgers crossing, birds singing, an owl hooting, bats flitting and deer passing through. This is probably because I have camped in this place before now. Unfortunately, a few other people like camping here too, including a group of youngsters who came last summer and left lots of trash around. This could be a problem in the future. Another problem is the fact that the cows are posted here for a couple of weeks in the spring and autumn as they make their way to and from the higher alpages. I am not sure whether this comes right in the middle of the most active time for birds but it could be a real hindrance to my studies to have to move somewhere else during these times.

It is positioned in the middle of the field inside a thicket of hazel and ash trees. I have a view of pretty much most of the valley and the ridge is in plain sight. Not too sunny in the summer but not cold in the winter either. This could make a very good sit~spot.

I sat here for a while and again as I did in the first sit~spot yesterday; heard and saw absolutely nothing. A few days ago I did hear some bird activity in the thicket opposite and that was what prompted me to return but on the whole, this is the quietest time of year, so I am not expecting anything to be moving as birds try and save their energy in the cold; especially in this period of groggy, overcast and bitter weather.

Soon, I moved on up the ridge to a place that looked back down over the valley; another potential place to sit. There was a pile of rocks here (rubble from an ancient ruined shepherd’s hut) and I managed to wedge myself up against a tree and I soon realised that I had a rather good view of the canopy from a mid-way position. If there is a place to study bird behaviour up close, then this is it.

sit spot 1

sit spot 3

sit spot 2

Only time will tell if this is going to be the place or not. We need to get over this spell of crummy weather and get more into spring until I can make a decision, based on what I start to see in these places in terms of bird and mammal activity.