Wednesday 20th June

This morning I took a trip out to the R.S.P.B reserve at Rainham Marsh to meet up with Howard Vaughan ( RSPB, information officer at Rainham )on his Wednesday morning walk and some of my other birding buddies. Great place to see birds that you probably won’t see over Brickfields like the Marsh Harrier I saw there this morning. After a good walk round the reserve we all have a cuppa together in the centre and pick up the local bird gossip around Essex. Over the last couple of weeks a few Barn Owls have seen around Rainham, Hornchurch, Upminster and over Cranham Marsh......So about 7pm off I go to Brickfields, did I see any Barn Owls...nah !

However standing on the Pond dipping platform watching a singing chiffchaff and a Blackcap I could hear a splashing sound behind me, which appeared to come from an overflow drainage ditch. So I went over to see and there in a very large puddle in the ditch were fish! They were stranded in about  three inches of water ( see pictures) as the overflow drainage ditch which had been full because of the heavy rainfall recently had now done it job of collecting excess water and the water had soaked away naturally, leaving the fish stranded and nearly high and dry !

A quick dash home for my Wellington boots, small fish net and bucket! This takes me back about fifty years, tiddler catching over Wanstead Park!

So after an emergency fish evacuation I  managed to rescue 27 fish, all Rudd, oh and one Smooth Newt. I didn’t rescue him really, he could have just walked away at any time!

Where are they now.....all put in the pond ! I’m going to find out where they had come from because the ditches are to prevent flooding of the land. Water from the pond does not fill up the ditches, the water comes from streams and small rivers locally.... it's a mystery to me!

                                                                            Click on picture to enlarge

        The Ditch where the fish were stranded, the depth being approx 3''        Some of the fish (Rudd) being put into the pond.
6/24/2012 06:40:11 am

Good job rescuing the fish! I found your website while browsing and would like to say it's fantastic! I hadn't heard of this reserve before and it looks great, hopefully I will be able to visit before long.


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