Up to date information about the National Trust owned area of Wenlock Edge, set in the Shropshire Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Regular updates from the Rangers regarding ongoing projects and upcoming events.
As the sun rose this morning 14 people met in the National Trust car park at Presthope to enjoy the wonderful sounds of the dawn chorus. Led by Martin George from CJ's Wildbird food we wandered through the woods, stopping occasionally as he pointed out to us which birds we could hear. Blackcaps, Blackbirds and a Pied Flycatcher were amongst the species that we encountered early on, all staking a claim to their particular territories.
We then headed out along the top of Lea Quarry, this offered a different habitat and with it different species. Willow Warbler, Linnet and Whitethroat were all encountered before we headed back into the woods to visit the bird hide. The feeders at the hide are much quieter now than they were just a few weeks ago as birds are busy nesting and there is more natural food about. We heard Nuthatch, Chiffchaff and Goldcrest as we headed back towards the car park, it was a thoroughly enjoyable and informative few hours and i hope to be able to repeat the event next year.
The woodmill was on site on Wednesday turning felled trees into usable products, i thought we might get round to cutting some of the timber that we recently felled next to the power lines but in the end we had enough Ash to cut to keep the mill busy all day. The planked Ash is all being bought by a carpenter, Anthony Jones who is based in Bishops Castle. He will kiln dry the timber before using it to made interior doors and floorboards. We will have another day of milling soon to get through the rest of the timber.
The sawmill was operated by Nathan of Home Forestry.
Nathan was also back in the woods on Thursday and Friday but this time with a different machine, his mini forwarder can get to most parts of the wood, even on steep slopes. This allows easy extraction of timber that has already been cut into short lengths, it is then transported down the hill and stacked so that it can season.
Whilst this was taking place we continued winching lengths of timber down from the steeper slopes where even Nathan can't get to.
We are busy moving timber around at the moment and it is being used for a variety of different things. I took a load of lengths of Sycamore and Ash to Acton Scott working farm for the Bodger to turn into chair legs on his lathe.
We have also supplied an Oak tree to Brockton School, this will become a bench within the school grounds once it has been carved. I believe it is going to become a dragon with hollows carved along its length for people to sit on. The bench is being constructed in memory of local farmer Graham Goodman who sadly passed away recently.
Regular readers of this blog (not sure if there are any) will be aware that we had to fell some big Douglas Fir and Larch beside some power lines whilst the power was switched off recently. These trees have been sat on the old railway line since then in full lengths, well not any longer. On Monday Alistair cut them into lengths and i loaded them onto our timber trailer to move them, the reason for this is that we have a sawmill on site tomorrow so they can be planked, turned into gate posts or other useful timber products.