Headstarting is a collaborative effort between WWT, BirdsRussia and the RSPB, and occurs as part of the International Arctic Expedition mounted each year by BirdsRussia under the leadership of Dr. Evgeny Syroechkovskiy.

How much for the tomatoes? – 21 May 2011

21 May 2011 I headed out across the Tundra during the morning with Nige and Jochen, a close Willow Grouse walked ahead of us. A Short-eared Owl and Arctic Skua were dominating the area, Long-billed Dowitchers, c200 in total were flying over calling and displaying. Otherwise it was a s
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Fresh fruit and veg at last – 20 May 2011

20 May 2011 We woke at around 0630, I got ready to go out, I needed a long walk to make up for the day spent inside hanging around for nothing yesterday, Nige was spending the morning working on his laptop. I got my outdoor gear on and headed out across the Tundra from the airport. On
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Another delay, still no equipment – 19 May 2011

19 May 2011 Woke at 0600 drank tea and got ready for the day, we visited the small shop which is at one end of the accommodation. Our current routine now is to buy a drinking yoghurt, some bread if they have any or breadsticks if not and eat it with cheese triangles or salami for brea
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The cancelled flight, time to prepare with vodka – 18 May 2011

18 May 2011 Flight cancelled for today so no equipment to sort, I headed out with Simon to count birds locally and explore. The snow in the air and bright light made it extremely difficult to watch birds, we needed to keep sunglasses on and found it hard to see them clearly. I had sto
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Our first meal – 17 May 2011

17 May 2011 Both of us tried to stay awake until 2100 but as soon as we led down at 1800 we slept, I awoke at 0100 and got back to sleep at 0330, we both got up at 0530, hungry and thirsty, we went to see if we could get a drink from the airport but it was closed, we had been advised
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Meeting the rest of the team before we leave for Chukotsk – 15 May

15 May 2011 – 1400hrs We met up with a number of our expedition party at Liza’s flat at 1400, this consisted of, Simon, Garit, Grigor and, the charming Evgeny, who talked through what to expect and the rough plan of the expedition. It was very inspiring and whetted the appetite
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Arriving in Moscow – 14 May 2011

14 May 2011 After two days off work on annual leave I have been preparing for this trip, buying all sorts of things that are needed and will be essential. The day has arrived where I must say goodbye and begin travel. The last two hours at home and being dropped off at WWT Slimbridge
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