Friday, 27 May 2011

Where to find wildlife at Whitsun

The end of May is always a great time to discover local wildlife and wildplaces. With spring giving way to early summer our local countryside from the Chilterns down to the Vale of Aylesbury is alive with birds, insects and flowering plants. Here are some of the best places to explore and discover;

College Lake, BBOWT's wetland reserve north of Tring with a new visitor centre and cafe. Nature trails and super new bird hides will get you close to waders and other water birds as they rear their young, A great place for dragonflies and butterflies too plus wildflower meadows.

Warburg Reserve, Bix, BBOWTs flagship reserve in the beechwoods north of Henley. Peaceful trails take you through a variety of habitats where woodland birds and butterflies thrive, and orchids can be found along the rides.
Hartslock Reserve BBOWT
Otmoor, RSPB's new reserve near Beckley, north of Oxford. New trails and hides overlook reedbeds and open water, and a growing list of wetland birds. Listen out for Grasshopper and Cettis Warblers, look out for Hobbies overhead and if you are very lucky, spot an otter!

Closer to home the many paths that criss cross the Bradenham Estate through woods and across restored chalk grassland offer many wildlife experiences. A circular walk around Lodge Hill could include views of Corn Buntings and Yellowhammers along the hedgerows plus the song of Blackcaps, Willow Warblers and Chiffchaffs. At Grangelands and Pulpit Hill a good selection of butterflies are now on the wing and at Brush Hill the rich chalk flora is beginning to blossom.

So plenty to choose from. More details of the BBOWT reserves mentioned above can be found at http://www.bbowt.org.uk/  Click on the reserves tab.

       Princes Risborough Walking Festival           
15 local wildlife & history walks June 7th - 12th
          Click on Walking Festival tab above          

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