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January 2014

posted 4 Feb 2014, 08:30 by Jane Arnold   [ updated 4 Feb 2014, 09:10 ]
standing water

What a soggy start to 2014! There is alot of standing water on the Green, with new ponds and streams appearing daily. It has, however, been a very mild month and the snowdrops are already starting to flower! This is a month earlier than last year.

barn owls

Despite the grotty weather, there has been some exciting developments on the bird front. Bob Russon has already seen 43 bird species this year in and around the Green, including the little grebes on Leomansley ponds and the kingfisher. In addition we may be fortunate enough to have barn owls hunting over the Green. WildlifeKate (of Springwatch and Autumnwatch fame) has recently put up a barn owl nesting box in the vicinity of Pipe Green, which is being continually monitored with some very clever infrared cameras. As shown in this photo, she has got some amazing footage of a pair of barn owls visiting the box on a regular basis. You can follow this fascinating story on her blog page as well as live footage from the camera on her website. Barn owls generally hunt at night and may well be using Pipe Green. Maybe, when it is a bit warmer, I will venture over at dusk/early evening, to see if I can see them. Wouldn't that be amazing?!

Image to the right courtesy of Kate Macrae 
historic document

One of my New Year's resolutions was to add more information to the history part of the website. With this in mind, I have been spending quite a few hours at the Lichfield Record Office going through the Pipe Green Trust records. At present I am looking at the accounts from 1794 and gradually working my way forwards. So far I am up to 1810! I never knew accounts could be so interesting! I am starting to build up a picture of how the Green was being used, what work was being done and who were members of the Trust. With most things though, no sooner do you answer one question, but it raises another ten! I can see this is going to take me longer than I initially thought!