Friday, 21 September 2012
This was the second of two lakes I visited in the Brenne the other day. I was going to include a picture of the first but to be quite honest, one lake looks very much like another. I hoped to see some birds because it's supposed to be migration season and many migratory birds stop over here. Not the day I was there. I could have guessed that before I got to the lakes because there were no men marching around with very large lenses, and looking disdainfully at my small camera. Always, always, they check out other people's cameras, a quick glance to one side. It doesn't take long for mine to be dismissed as no challenge.
A channel or ditch leading from one lake to another. A slightly different view. The lakes were almost all man-made during the Middle Ages, intended for fish farming. One lake would be drained into another so that the fish could be harvested.
On one of the roads, or maybe several, you can see signposts that warn you of what looks like tortoises crossing the road. They are called cistudes but when I went to look them up, they are turtles. I must have misread the article because I came away with the idea that they are tiny, and wondering how to avoid them on the road.
I was completely wrong. On this visit there may have been no birds but there were some cistudes, also known as European pond turtles, Emys orbicularis. They are really quite rare.
You will need to click on these photos to have much chance of seeing the turtles, two of them doing what comes naturally. That is to say one of them was attempting to.
The female turtle got pretty fed up with this and chucked him off into the water to cool off. Here you can see him clambering out at the near end of the log. He didn't try again.
The park provides shelters or hides where you can watch all these natural goings on. As you can see, there was nobody about. I spotted notices that asked photographers to allow other people at the windows so I imagine there are times when it can be very busy.
The shelters are nicely done out with benches by the windows and this one had this decorative screen for no other reason that to be decorative, I think. There are always identification guides on the walls and generally list of what might be around at the moment. They've constructed these places quite cleverly in that not only do they allow you to see wildlife you might not otherwise see, but they also keep you well away from them.