Uncle Henry´s Universe.

Uncle Henry´s Universe.

About the blog

I have no heavy training... Barely Elementary School. Preferred the wilderness, it became my university, but I got muddy boots and experience instead of School knowledge so my English was therefore quite inadequate. This blog is a project to improve my skills in English language.

We all have our own universe, welcome to visit mine.

Busy days!

Nature ConservationPosted by Uncle Henry Mon, February 09, 2015 22:24:13

Snow, frost and thaw has created perfect tracking conditions. Now is the winter at its finest, it's just to enjoy. In the mountains the snow depth varies from 65 to 85 cm, it is built over many obstacles and makes skiing a real pleasure.

In difficult terrain, is usually snowshoes best choice, but if I expect that tracking also will offer longer distances over flat bogs, I put on my old-fashioned wooden skis. With hand-sewn beak shoes and leather straps that hold them in place, they are quick to put on and off and perfect for tracking!

The snow depth means that many moose leave the mountains and gather in the valleys and lowlands, where there is less snow and easier to access food. A colleague saw 16 of them together at a feeding place. Convenient for moose, but also an additional offer for the wolves, there is much food in one place. These four joined together near our farm today.

This week I finally found the wolf pack that eluded me this winter. I have not yet tracked them together for a long distance, but I have accumulated quite a lot of urine and droppings for DNA analysis. The young wolves lived around an old moose carcass while their parents were in search of new prey. They had filled an ice-covered lake with traces of fun and games. It must have been a lovely sight.

It is now busy days. Only one week left before the rutting season puts a stop to track lynx families, and I have not found one yet. And more wolves to trace. And almost time for golden eagles. And a guilty conscience because I have not had time with the birds home on the farm, missed this year's bird count. A sign of the times, the stressful lives we all live...

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At it again!

Nature ConservationPosted by Uncle Henry Thu, January 15, 2015 17:54:36

Just got news that wolf hunting is to start again ... Hmm… Not quite as inspiring to work then.

Otherwise, winter is back in full force, it's nice, if only the wolves wanted to collaborate better everything would be really nice.

The criteria for a passing rejuvenation of the wolf pack is tough, we need to track at least three to four (depending on conditions) wolves together for a distance of 15 km. (or 3 km at three different occasions) Ideally, we also find urine or faeces for DNA test.

Last week has been a struggle. I know they're five, but how hard I try, the result is the same. It's almost like a conspiracy; if that tracker arrives so we all go in different directions, and guys remember, no peeing and no poo!

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Unexpectedly weekend!

Nature ConservationPosted by Uncle Henry Sun, January 11, 2015 23:54:38

This week's last working day gave us beautiful weather with both wolf and lynx tracking, but above all a big surprise.

Only a few hours before the hunt for 24 wolves in our county would start, the Administrative Court stop it all. At least for now. They should consider whether the new restriction of the right to appeal, is compatible with EU law. It ought politicians thought about a little earlier. I certainly understand the frustration of hunters, there is a lot of work expended on planning and logistic. We can only hope that decision makers succeed in producing an in every way sustainable management of the wolf population for the future.

But I'm not particularly sad, I like wolves, I do not mind if they get even more. (I know that not everyone shares my opinion, I respect that, but I am going to enjoy wolves' presence as long as they are)

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It´s everyday life again.

Nature ConservationPosted by Uncle Henry Wed, January 07, 2015 21:07:05

New Year's night was cold but when the day dawned, it was above zero. Then it got warm and almost all the snow disappeared. Yesterday was bare ground at our farm. At night the snow came back, so now it's winter again, but the weather forecast promises rain for tomorrow ... Where has the old-fashioned winters gone?

First working day of the new year. Nice, but hard to come up in the mountains despite four wheel drive and high ground clearance. 20-30 cm of wet snow over icy roads ... Yummy!

Found night old traces of a wolf pack but it became less than a kilometer tracking. Backtracking led to a sump area where I did not want to go over. (Comfortable after the holidays :-) The tracks ahead indicated hunting for moose, so there I did not want to disturb. At least I know where I'll continue tomorrow.

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Methusalah, Old Man´s Beard

Nature ConservationPosted by Uncle Henry Sat, July 26, 2014 13:48:08

Last week has been warm, between 30 and 35 degrees Celsius, perfect weather for this year's inventory of Methuselah´s Beard Lichen. Not as heavy as work with a chainsaw, but tiring anyway because several of the premises situated at the top of steep mountains. 200-300 meters altitude climbing brings out one or two drop of sweat.

Methusalah, Old Man´s Beard, is lichen with very long stems and short, even side branches. It is considered the longest lichen in the world, (up to 10 meters long!) It is found in boreal forests and coastal woodland in Europe, Asia, and North America. Methuselah is very rare in Scandinavian forests nowadays. It requires old-growth forest, which is a rare commodity in today's production landscape. Our only protected lichen.

Many lichens I have followed for 10 years now, they have become personal friends. They are cozy patting on and are growing upwards 10 cm in length during a good year.

The border between Sweden and Norway is marked by a wide street. At regular intervals, are boundary cairns of stone, painted yellow on the top. This is the cairn # 94, Älgklinten, erected in 1755. Älgklinten is one of our smallest lichen premises.

Border south!

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Fox pups.

Nature ConservationPosted by Uncle Henry Tue, July 01, 2014 20:00:16

Sometimes provides the working day something extra, like yesterday, when I came across some fox pups. Siblings who was exploring a bit from the lair! It´s Always entertaining, always wonderful to enjoy. Life is good!

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This year's ringing.

Nature ConservationPosted by Uncle Henry Sun, June 08, 2014 19:23:21

Two new golden eagle chicks were ringed today, will be interesting to follow them over the next few years. The kid in the picture is about 35 days old. Think it looks adorable on the baby blue blanket.

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Nature ConservationPosted by Uncle Henry Sat, June 07, 2014 16:57:18

It's hard to keep blogging when spring and early summer rush by! Here is a summary of the month May.

May 7, It´s snowing profusely over our cottage, for the final time this spring.

For many years we have passed the signs to nature reserves we would like to visit. This year, it was finally off.

Surö bokskog is a small sanctuary at the east shore of Lake Vänern, just south of Sjövik. A fantastic beech forest where forest doves and songbirds competed for the sound space.

Yttre Bodane is another sanctuary, located on the western shore of Lake Vänern. An entirely different habitat than Surö. Vänern is our country's largest lake, an inland sea, and here you will truly experience the sea feeling.

When we 14 May built fireplaces in the nature reserve Knappnäs, at river Klarälven, had almost all the snow melted from the ski pistes in Branäs.

Winter was hard for the reserve located in height, it has meant a lot of extra work this spring when the trails will be cleared. The chainsaw has been hot!

Sure, it was better like this!

A small inspector followed with interest my wife's work with painting orange Trail Markings. (Mom hawk owl was not as thrilled, but she attacked luckily not)

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Bare ground season.

Nature ConservationPosted by Uncle Henry Mon, April 28, 2014 21:31:56

Now we have the winter season behind us and the management of nature reserves take over. Busy days are coming.

I have helped a colleague with driving up timber for footbridges in Gillertjärn nature reserve. It is one of the northernmost occurrences of yew in our country.

I have also fired grass on Erola (with two other colleagues). Erola is a aspiring nature reserve, where haymaking ground requires help to be improved.

And today I have cleared the trails in the Ginbergsängens nature reserve. Birdsong is euphoric; it's a great time right now.

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What´s up?

Nature ConservationPosted by Uncle Henry Wed, April 09, 2014 09:51:58

Working with the Golden Eagle is usually associated with observations at very long distances, only rarely am I close enough to photograph, but this year came one of the Eagles to me to check the situation. It hung over me for a good while, willing to be photographed. I finally got paid for all these days of cold and long wait that otherwise characterizes the fieldwork.

Some days this year has been quite unique! As on March 24, when I spent more than 15 minutes following a young wolf who hunted Canada geese on a lake ice in Norway. (I take the road on the Norwegian side of the border sometimes, when our gravel roads are too bad because of the spring thaw)

Then, to track a wolverine, where I really would watch for Golden Eagle ...

... But after a while, also found bear tracks, which I traced back to the bear's den where it remained during the winter.

Such days are inspiring!

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