"This morning was one of those mornings we have been waiting for, the sun rose as a bright orange ball across the Fen as I went down the farm giving a golden glint to everything.

I was down Chestnut farm looking to photograph a few birds, the first one I came across was a Whitethroat searching the hogweed for aphids. The second one I saw was a Linnet with a feather in its beak. Most small birds will be finished nesting by the end of July as they feed their young on insects and insects start to decline through August but Linnets will be nesting all through August as they feed their young on unripe seeds, every bird has to take it’s nestlings moist food and they can get enough moisture from unripe seeds. Those birds that bring a beak full of insects to their nestlings can only afford to go 2 or 300 meters from their nest and they only feed one youngster at each visit. Linnets can go up to a mile to collect food for their nestlings and they put the seeds in their gullet and when they get back to the nest they feed the whole family.

I then went round to Baston Fen and went past my daughters house where there were more than 40 young Swallows sat on the roof of an outbuilding. There were no Swallows nesting in this deserted farmyard before my daughter restored the buildings about 5 years ago. As soon as she moved in Swallows moved in and they have been increasing in numbers ever since, she has no horses but she does have a large pond that I dug about 30 years ago.

I moved on down the farm track and stopped at the next flower strip, there was no wind, it was just so lovely to walk amongst the flowers with the sun on my back seeing all the reds, blues, pinks and  of the various flowers. Bumble Bees were very busy mainly visiting the Meadow Campion and the Betony but there were far less butterflies about than normal, I only saw one Ringlet, one Gatekeeper and a Small Skipper but it was before 7am. We have these good and bad butterfly years and as one person said at a drainage board meeting, nature is very resilient, it can bounce back, more or less saying not to worry they will be back to normal numbers next year. I agreed with him but said it will only bounce back to 90 or 95% of what it was before, that is the sad state of affairs, our lifestyle is slowly pushing wildlife to one side and when it is gone we will never get it back."

Nicholas Watts MBE, Chairman of the Board of Trustees