Morning frosts this week have firmly indicated the arrival of autumn. A few days ago a trip to Prestwick Carr was needed to check on the flexigraze livestock there; the sheep were waiting for it to be dry enough to get them off while the ponies were also, unknown to them, soon to come off to better grazing. As if to demonstrate why they were there in the first place one of the Exmoor ponies decided to have a good munch on some birch near the site entrance but as the leaves begin to drop this will become less of an option.
Meanwhile the wet ditches in the centre of the site were covered in a thin layer of ice, imprisoning the sphagnum moss that is beginning to colonise these wet strips of land. Elsewhere other mosses had a frosty coating; a misty blanket hung over the carr; the large beech trees were just beginning to turn yellow and a flock of geese headed south: all signs that summer, such as it was, is over.