A really good find was a small colony of wood sorrel growing on a fallen bough. A rare plant for Hertfordshire, but one that the county recorder, Trevor James, is already aware of. Other spring plants were in flower: wood anemone, bluebell, primrose, bugle, and lesser celandine.
Overhead, a red kite soared and a common buzzard was being mobbed by the carrion crows. In the wood itself, the expected deciduous birds were both seen and heard. Nuthatch and treecreeper were noted along with great, blue and long tailed tits, pheasants, chaffinches, wrens, robins and chiffchaffs.
Another area on the farm that should be good for the children is a man made lake, now well established and populated by tufted duck, grey heron, moorhen, coot, canada goose and mute swan. The goat willows all around the water should be excellent for warblers later this spring, so a dawn wander is on the cards along with several nights mothing. Exciting times ahead and I'm looking forward to putting a plan together so the school can benefit from this wonderful opportunity to get out, study nature, look at conservation at work and become familiar with how farming can help encourage wildlife whilst still going about its business of producing food.
|pheasant diving for cover|
|bugle just coming into bloom|