Saturday, 4 October 2008

Saturday 4th.October 2008

This morning , I thought I would have a walk through the local wood to the fields beyond , down past the farm lake lake , and back home . Sounds idyllic until you enter the wood , to find the path edges strewn with dog mess , and then to find bags of it thrown into the undergrowth . Added to that , with the ' tidy the garden ' time of year upon us , the edges of the wood that have gardens backing on to them , are being used as a municipal dump for the bedding plants and other debris from the gardens . Consequently , next year , some of these plant seeds will germinate , and what was ancient woodland , will become just an extension of their gardens . I have contacted the Council in the past , but it appears nothing has changed .Here , a lawn must have been renewed/replaced , and the old turf just dumped in the woods . It got no better when I reached the fields beyond the wood . What should be a pleasant hay meadow , has become a dump for old tyres . The red arrow shows where the tyres have been stacked , access being gained from the lane beyond the hedgerow .
I'm afraid this sort of thing is going to get worse and worse . Rant over .

My two hour walk , I must admit , surprised me for the number of bird species seen/heard . In total 22 species were recorded , albeit without anything exciting . The breakdown being : Chaffinch (1) , Jackdaw (20/25) , Rose Ringed Parakeet (6) , Goldcrest (1) , Carrion Crow (5)

Blue Tit (5) , Jay (5) , Great Spotted Woodpecker (4) , Robin (5) , Nuthatch (2) , Magpie (8) , Wren (4) , Great Tit (5) , Dunnock (1) , Wood Pigeon (11) , Green Woodpecker (2) , Pheasant (7) , Kestrel (1) , Chiffchaff (1) , Rook (2) , Starling (11) , and Grey Heron (1) . I would have got a nice shot of the Kestrel , only the Carrion Crow chased it off as soon as it alighted on the telephone pole . Along the back lane , the Wild Hops which were clambering over everything in the hedgerow , have now grown to full size . Along side the horse field , the Horse Chestnut has dropped most of it's conkers , and with them , most of it's leaves , leaving it's 'sticky buds' open to the elements , waiting for next spring . The weather on the second half of the walk improved significantly , and by the time I reached home , it was quite warm , and every Ivy that was in flower , had good numbers of Honey Bees and Hover Flies feeding on the nectar .

After lunch , I toyed with the idea of doing Fackenden Down in the sunshine , but already clouds were starting to build from the South West , so I settled for a look up on Hayes Common . The first thing I saw on the heathland area , was a flock of about 10/15 Long Tailed Tits , noisily working their way along the trees and Gorse alongside the road . Apart from them it was very quiet , but I did find a variation of the Fly Agaric fungi . Some are red with white blotches ( remnants of the veil ) on the cap , but this was an orange specimen , without any white blotches , just holes where it has been chewed . Also found was a smaller , brick coloured fungi ,Gymnopilus penetrans . Very little else was found , but I was surprised , after a few cold nights , to find one Small Copper still on the wing , trying to warm up in the brief sunny spells . On the way back to the car , I had a quick look at the Oaks with the Purple Hairsteak eggs on the buds . Most are still in place , but it will be later , when the leaves fall , they will be most vunerable to predation .

1 comment:

Warren Baker said...

A good rant there greenie! Want some of my pills! Seriously though, I do feel for you, I have all of those problems on my patch. There is a great swathe of the population I have absolutely no time for.
PS. Why do horse chestnuts have ''sticky'' buds ?