Posted on Saturday, April 24th, 2010
GBG Director David Waters is on the last leg of a spring Great Bustard census in Saratov, Russia:
“Yesterday was my last day of census, or rather half day. We were cautious about getting stuck so at lunchtime I headed into the city of Saratov for a meeting with Dr Anatoly Khrustov at the Severtsov Institute of Ecology. Once finished there I caught the 6.30pm train in the evening, and I write this a few hours short of Moscow where we are due in at 10.30am.
The census so far has looked comparable with previous years, but my short visit and the problems with vehicles getting stuck makes any conclusions impossible. The team in Saratov will continue over the coming week. A summary of the census will be produced in due course.
A highlight of the last day was a very handsome male Red-headed Bunting.
I also saw a beaver patrolling a small lake early this morning from the train window. I rarely see any mammals from the train, whereas as a short train journey in the UK nearly always produces deer, rabbits and hares. It is easy to overlook just how rich our wildlife is at home. Our mild maritime climate being largely responsible, I am sure.
I am hoping that, as it is a weekend, the Moscow Metro will be less hectic than usual, but it is always a great way to get around the city…”