Thursday, November 18, 2010

Duff cocks, and a third interesting lump in my undercrackers

Duff cocks, and a third interesting lump in my undercrackers.

We have had some very wet weather with flooding in other parts of the country, around here, it has been fairly steady with minimum run off and most of it getting into the ground, to back up this theory, the river is not carrying much colour although we do have enough water to get the Mill stream running again. The Brown Trout are spawning hard, including one enormous hen on the middle bends, and there are many redds cut in the clean gravel. Herons are making a nuisance of themselves along with a brace of Little Egret who seem to be inseparable. The eggs in the hatchery are a week old now and look to be ok, I have picked very few dead eggs out this year, unlike last year’s batch when I think I must have used a duff cockfish during fertilisation.
We have had few Grayling Fishermen along this year, despite there being a good stock in the river. Now that the weed has been cut out several of the shoals of Roach have joined together to form one super shoal and will provide good sport to a single maggot presented under a trotted stick float. There are also a couple of Chub, or Chublets of around a pound plus the Perch on the bottom bends.
With the heavy rain the Pheasants have opted to spend much of the day in the wood, visiting the strips of Maize between the showers, which has meant I have been getting through a bit more corn. This year we are paying £160 a tonne for wheat, which is the highest, we have ever had to pay. As is the way of the enigmatic Wild Duck some days they are with us some days they are not, some nights the Barley on the pond is all eaten up, some nights there is a lot left over. I suspect that they are being fed very hard higher up the valley and shot at regularly, moving out to other ponds when their favourite feeding spot with its mountain of Barley has become to risky only to return when the memory of flying lead/bismuth has passed.
The Ash Tree that demolished the bridge has now partly been cut up; the replacement bridge will be over engineered in the grand manner of the Victorians, with big plates of metal and lots or rivets, or possibly a less elaborate wooden one sited away from any big trees. The Amber tree still clings on to its burgundy leaves, as do the Oaks.

Away from the river, a third interesting lump in my underpants proved to be a hernia, that is to be dealt with in the new year, along with a second hernia that I was unaware off, and somehow I managed to finish runner up in Hampshire FA’s Groundsman of the year 2010 competition, and I didn’t know we were even entered.

“This Groundsman demonstrated considerable innovation in his refusal to use parallel or perpendicular lines, each line painted maintained its own unique identity and direction; occasionally straight, often curved his current work breaks new ground in football pitch design, his penalty spots in particular, are a triumph!”

An FA spokesman said

The final inspection by FA pitch gurus and mandarins occurred two days after the village firework display. Seven hundred people jumping up and down on the turf was explained as pushing the barriers of organic rolling, and the burnt patch in the corner where the bonfire had been as, efforts to change soil structure in a boggy patch through the medium of fire.
Luckily they had visited in the summer, incognito with muffled oars, when we had some grass.

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