Tue, 21/08/2018 - 14:53

Despite prolonged cold snaps which continued into spring, the team battled the elements admirably and the bank was completed at the end of April. By then the first Sand Martins had been in the UK for a month, but it was noticeable that fewer had returned than normal. Numbers were down by almost 50% at Rutland Water and similar trends were reported across the country, with poor weather on migration to blame.
In mid-June we were delighted to see Sand Martins investigating the bank for the first time. Some birds even began adding lining to some of the nests. Although too late for breeding to occur this year, this is an encouraging sign for the future and we hope the first pairs will breed next spring.
The Osprey class at Ketton school have been closely involved from the outset, and in early July we organised for them to join Lloyd Park ringing chicks at Rutland Water. We hope we’ll be able to do the same at Ketton next year. We'll also be streaming live images from the bank via a high resolution camera once the first birds have taken up residence.
We were also delighted to showcase the project at the Hanson Open Day, attended by 4000 people on 30th June. We talked to a constant stream of visitors all day, and were interviewed by Rutland Radio. We were particularly keen to point out how the Sand Martin bank could be replicated at Hanson sites around the country; although the Quarry Life Award ends in September, this is a long term project that is only just beginning.