Skip to Main Content

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.

Roland and I go into Angermunde. Sitting outside a coffee shop, we feel like a couple of locals. Looking up, there’s a male black redstart calling from a rooftop, such a lovely little bird. We buy a bucket for cleaning the incubators then go back to the mill. Nigel can’t be budged from the IR (incubator room), so with nothing else pressing, Roland and I head out to explore the forest. We find a small alder swamp and stop to explore. A pair of cranes spot us from the opposite side of the track and slip away quietly into the woods like Victorian gentlemen in their grey frock coats. It’s amazing how easily their tall grey shapes blend into the woodland landscape and suddenly they’ve disappeared. We crunch over thick layers of dead beech leaves to the swamp and gingerly walk around the edge. It’s very quiet and still, with only an occasional marsh tit calling from the willow scrub. The patches of disturbed soil shows where wild boar have been feeding recently, and there is a vague piggy smell.

cranes in the forest
Record shot of a pair of cranes melting into the forest

We return to our new home in the mill at dusk and Roland cooks the evening meal – chopped bacon from the Angermunde butcher with new potatoes and sauerkraut. All the talk is about the cranes and tomorrow’s first excursion with the team to collect eggs.

This is the diary of Richard Archer, RSPB Conservation Officer for Somerset. In mid April, Richard spent three weeks as part of the RSPB/WWT/Pensthorpe crane team collecting crane eggs in Eastern Germany. These are his personal
reflections on the successful German visit. You can read all of Richards Diary here.

%s1 / %s2
About the author
User picture

Richard Archer is RSPB’s Conservation Officer for Somerset, and took his sabbatical in the of Spring 2010 to help with the collection, incubation and transport of the first year’s eggs.