Saturday, 14 May 2011

Woodland Event

This morning eighteen of us assembled at the top of Mill Wood to begin Sussex Butterfly Conservation’s Spring Butterflies and Wildflowers event. We were guided around the Woodland by Mike and Tracy and we were shown the results of the fantastic conservation work Mike and Tracy have done over the last couple of years.It was great to see the woodland in springtime, as for many of us our only previous experience of this woodland had been BC volunteer days in the winter.We saw Peacock, Green-veined white, Brimstone and Common blue butterflies, as well as longhorn and speckled yellow moths. We also saw many dragonflies and damselflies.
We had a special guest appearance from Sussex BC’s Michael Blencowe who showed us how to search for Orange-tip eggs and caterpillars on Garlic Mustard plants, and who’s Moth and Caterpillar ID skills proved invaluable to the event.We also learned from Tracy how woodpecker pellets can reveal much about their diet.
We saw lots of Caterpillars and Sawfly larvae.And we learned much about the history of the woodland and the surrounding countryside from John Roberts who worked in these woods in his youth.

Finally, I was mightily impressed by a wooden bridge made from materials sourced in the woodland. So all in all, a very enjoyable day, and held in more good weather as well.

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