Welcome to our twelfth RTCT newsletter. We always love to update people on what is happening around the catchment, and what better way to fill people in than with a monthly newsletter. We hope that you enjoy reading and welcome any suggestions for next month, just send them to Natalie@riverthame.org
The evenings are getting darker and we’ve had our first frost, we are well and truly into Autumn. I would be interested in seeing any Autumnal photos that you take while you’re out and about exploring the Thame Catchment.
New Project Officer
The Trust is very pleased to announce that we are on the lookout for a New Project Officer to join our steadily growing team.
This is a really exciting time for the trust and we are looking for someone with experience in Nature Conservation, Volunteer Management, project management and partnership working to share it with us.
If you or anyone you know may be interested then there is further information about the position HERE
Calling all River Thame Supporters
We are very excited to invite you all to our Water Wildlife and Communities Event on the 29th November 6.30pm – 9.00pm. This is a joint event with our partners Freshwater Habitats Trust. RTCT will be presenting the results of our water monitoring programme so far, as well as showcasing the importance of citizen science and what we can achieve together.
It is a free event and it will be held at the Gateway in Aylesbury.
For more information please click HERE
Booking is essential. To book your place please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Volunteers and River Restoration
The beginning of this month was jam packed full of work parties. Volunteers donned their waders and really got stuck into the restoration work we were carrying out on the Chalgrove Brook in Stadhampton. Just like much of the Thame catchment, this section of the Chalgrove Brook was over wide and dredged, making it really quite deep in places! Being over wide and deepened causes the water to be very sluggish causing sediment to drop out easily onto the bed, smothering what is left of any gravel, which is important for many fish species.
We created 2 brushwood berms, which are D shaped protrusions into the middle of the channel creating a meander type effect. This narrows the channel and increases the flow and hopefully removing some sediment too. We also created a flow deflector which again narrows the channel and creates a still pool behind it which is a great hiding place for fish. Having a diversity of flow within a river system is great as it creates a variety of habitats.
Thank you to all of the volunteers and the Environment Agency for your help, we couldn’t have done it without you!
Keep your eyes peeled for more activities like this next Spring.
Wetland Bird Training Course
We all had a fabulous day walking around RSPB Otmoor with Nick Marriner learning about wetland bird surveying and ID. We even managed to avoid the looming storm Brian!
We are very grateful to our hardworking Trustee; Nick Marriner who coordinates our bird monitoring programme. We currently have over 65 volunteers out monitoring birds throughout the River Thame Catchment, which equates to nearly 10,000 records and 1,750 volunteer hours, which is the equivalent to one full time member of staff!
Thank you to all those volunteers for their hard work and a big welcome to those new volunteers who will be out and about over the next few months.
Remember Remember Wildlife this Weekend
Is it really that time of the year again when we all enjoy steamy cups of soup, warm ourselves on bonfires and watch in awe as the sky is lit up with fireworks?
When you are out having fun this weekend remember wildlife, especially those of you that are planning homemade bonfires. Piles of leaves, logs and twigs are the perfect hibernation spot for hedgehogs, amphibians and reptiles so its best to build your bonfires on the day you plan to light it to ensure there are no sleepy guests inside.
Lets finish on this photo of an elusive Water Rail photographed by Patricia Clissold on our wetland bird training course at Otmoor