Transpired that although the trails were extremely muddy, the river hadn't misbehaved too badly. However, Willow Holt nature reserve, which is always very low lying and wet, had flooded, leaving the occupants stranded and in need of assistance.
I didn't realise this at the time, but as I turned onto Wyke Lane I was wondering why an animal transporter was blocking my path, and several very excited border collies were leaping about splashing in the mini lakes the excess water had created.
What had happened was that the rare breed sheep Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust graze on the reserve had gotten themselves stuck on a little island in the floods, and needed rescuing. A crack team of sheperdesses had been dispatched, and the impressively horned black sheep guided safely to dryish land and a little ride to Idle Valley nature reserve.
The sheep were already quietly sat aboard the vehicle when I came across them, but Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust put rescue shots up on their website, I believe. Hopefully they were given the ovine equivalent of a hot cup of tea and slice of cake when they got to their new home.
The one thing I did notice was how calm they were aboard the trailer. It seemed they knew they were off to a place of safety.
All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 04.01.15
|The entrance to the Holt.
|A hint of horn
|The rescued occupants
|Willow Holt hut safely raised above the water.
|Barge puffing away. A warm stove perhaps.
|Farndon high water