Today was the first count of the season. And the weather seemed to recognise it! Graham, Paul and I found ourselves once again wading though the marshes in squalls of rain. This year’s explosion of Water Figwort has made some parts of the marshes even more of a struggle to negotiate. Whether it is also making the vegetation too dense for snipe is yet to be established. It is probably too early to expect many snipe around yet. However, Graham spotted one in Lower Sowerholme (the ex-Gleesons Field) and five flew up from the Ash Tree Pond area of Big Meadow. (Graham had also found three here on his last monthly inspection on 1st September.) Otherwise the only other bird identified was a wren in the Hay Meadow by Lucy Brook. , For the first time, the phragmites reeds that had been planted in Upper Sowerholme had grown high enough to be readily visible. They appear to be establishing reasonably well.