Happy Easter to All,
Hoping this update finds everyone and everyone’s nearest and dearest safe and sound.
We closed to all activities on Monday 23rd March, what a weird, crazy, scary, quiet two and half weeks it has been. I thought some of you may be interested what is happening here at the Lakes in your absence.
Wildlife seems to be taking over!
Great to see and smell this year’s blossom and catkins. Bluebells are now taking centre stage in woodlands and hedgerows
Muntjac and Roe Deer are roaming around the lakes without a care, looking at me and Evie with a haughty disdain should we disturb their roaming. There is one Roe Doe that has taken to lying down whilst sunbathing midmorning, she has the cutest fluffy twitchy ears.
Pheasants and Partridge abound, we are blessed with an abundant variety of birds, the true gems in our crown are the Kingfishers and Owls. I have not seen the Kingfisher recently, there are certainly plenty of fry for them! The Owls particularly the Tawnys are pretty active both day and night. They amuse me with their Twit-twooing, ‘ke-wick’ and answering ‘hoo-hoo-oooing’… throughput the day. We generally get a few ‘branch walkers’ at this time of year – the young owlets when nearly ready to fledge, strut out of their nests and walk along the branches, stretching wings and tucking them away again, occasionally we find owlets on the ground if a gust of wind catches them mid branch walk.
A Tawny Owl found itself at the foot of my Mother-in-law’s stairs a couple of weeks ago having fallen down her chimney. Fortunately she had not lit the fire, however a flustered Tawny, covered with ash, in your lounge is quite a spectacle. I had the challenge of returning it to the outdoors which involved pulling down all the blinds, closing curtains, putting the dog away, opening patio doors, a blanket and some quiet resolve. Operation was successful the owl return unharmed to its natural outdoor habitat. Mother-in-law’s lounge took some cleaning up!
I am still awaiting the return of the Reed Warblers and Cuckoos. A Red Kite has been seen a few times .
We have had fun with an otter. We generally have visiting otters in the late spring – early summer, we guess they are feeding their pups. This year we have had one otter here since early January, we thought because of all the rain and the rivers flooded he was displaced and probably return to river life as water levels subsided. Our boy is still here !! Chomping his way through an aquatic feast.
We think he has a territorial rival – A few days ago Simon was privy to watching a bold otter with an injury on his neck .Fingers crossed they sort themselves out without too much further scrapping and hurry back to the currents of river life.
Frog spawn has been and tadpoles dispersed.
The water in both lakes has an extraordinary clarity .
I could continue and expand on a host of observations, however I will squirrel them away to keep them in reserve for a future update if this lockdown continues for a few more weeks.
The business side of Lenches Lakes is definitely not wild.
Caravans and Camping – national bodies such as the Caravan and Motorhome Club and Campsites Uk have closed all sites including all U.K wide certified sites until the end of June. Hence both sites closed until the end of June – No doubt this date will be revised shortly resulting in either a relaxing of present guidelines or extension of closure. Meanwhile the ground has dried out nicely and both sites have been mown a couple of times both look tranquil and a little lonely. To be closed to Caravans and Camping at this time of year hurts.
Fly Fishing – We offer our finest Fly Fishing in the late spring /early summer as the water temperature steadily warms up, fly life ramps up , water clarity comparable to the finest of gins, lakeside flora and fauna indulgently entertaining and those feisty Rainbow trout actively patrolling all areas . To be closed to Fly Fishing at this time of year hurts
Open Water Swimming – What a cruel abrupt blow to our Winter Swimmers. Those who have swum in the lakes whilst water temperatures hovered at 3.5 and 4 degrees Celsius, those whose goal was to complete their first winter season, those who treasure their cold water immersions and swims as essential means of wellbeing. British Triathlon Association have cancelled all events until the end of June. Our summer swim sessions were going to start on Monday May 4th. To be closed at this time of year to open water swimmers hurts.
Gun Dog Training – I am pretty sure the gun dogs enjoy it as much as the handlers and Instructors. Most dogs and/or handlers have not long finished the shooting season. The HPRs will be looking forward to the counting season. Keeping the dogs on their toes, introducing them to new scenarios and practises, repeating and reinforcing learning essential for all involved. The fun these groups have is immensely rewarding . To be closed at this time of year to Gun Dog Training hurts.
Parties and Marqueed Functions – the lakeside and marquee area has dried out beautifully, the marsh marigolds are stunning in the margins, the water pristine , just how we like it for party hosts and their guests to enjoy . To be closed to functions at this time of year hurts
Lenches Lakes staff – some of which are self employed, others working insufficient hours or years to qualify for furloughing. All of which are precious to us as a company, as individuals and to our customers. To be unable to offer work to these wonderful people at any time of year hurts.
Our numerous ‘hurts’ pale into insignificance when compared to the effects of the Coronavirus ( COVID-19) pandemic that surrounds our planet. Hopefully the pains we all take to keep our families, friends, neighbours and worldwide population safe, will soon bear fruit permitting us all to pursue our freedoms with a brand new gratitude.
Wishing you all good health and staying safe wishes
Amanda and Simon