Nest boxes of the MoD Training Estate
Friday, March 23rd 2018
I had a great day jumping becks, streams and fences in search of nest boxes to repair, renovate and replace.
First on my list of boxes in need of attention was at Hudswell Grange, which bore signs of vandalism by Woodpecker and was quickly replaced with a woodcrete nest box.
On my way back I took a little time to admire an ancient and neglected hedge and ditch that once marked a land boundary.
Next I followed Badger Beck downstream through the woods to find two more damaged nest boxes. This time the perpetrators were wasps and the elements, and after a little while emptying the boxes and getting them re-secured to the trees I was on my way back to the car and heading towards High Insque.
The box in question at High Insque was one that me and Jenny picked up a couple of weeks ago which came back to have the lid repaired. It's location is especially interesting having been fixed to the side of one of two fallen trees at the edge of the wood that were undoubtedly brought down by high winds.
After High Insque I headed over to the steep slopes of High Spring Wood to replace two boxes, clean out another and relabel the fourth.
Traversing the slopes proved quite difficult when carrying a ladder two woodcrete boxes and a whole heap of tools by myself, however it was all worth it for the impressive views over Downholme and across to Marske in the distance.
After a quick stop off at Stop Bridge Lane to look at another couple of boxes it was time to head back to Foxglove where I was treated to a good sized murmuration on the Wathgill Road.
I had forgotten the incredible noise of hundreds of wings beating just overhead, what a treat!
All in all it has been a cracking day, tiring but well worth it! On my travels I've seen all manner of birds, beasts and plants; from Curlew at High Insque, to Primrose and Roe Deer in High Spring Wood, along with countless interesting veteran trees.