3 May 2018

A visit to the Strid Wood SSSI in May pleases those of us who belong to both the Bird and Botany Groups, as the riverside paths are surrounded by banks of Bluebells and Wood Anemones; the trees are only just coming into leaf, so birds can still be easily see with binoculars.

Pied Flycatchers and Redstarts were seen, but the third “star” species of Wood Warbler was not found. Numbers of this species have certainly fallen in recent years, and it is now on the “red list” of birds in danger throughout the UK and Europe.

Highlights of the day were mating Nuthatches and nesting Dippers, together with clear sightings of warblers, although the latter were not often seen but their calls could be heard. Four species of Tits were present, and Treecreepers entertained us in several places; surprisingly no Woodpeckers were seen or heard. A total of 33 species were seen. For the botanists, Toothwort and Moschatel (Town-hall-clock) were seen close to the foothpaths.

Strid Wood is a beautiful place and kept in very good condition by the Devonshire Estate; well worth a visit at any time of the year.
Colin Ginger