Saturday, 27 August 2011

Bank Holiday Sunday

We are going to have another go at bird ringing tomorrow morning so long as the weather is ok. If you are in the area between 7.30am and 10.30am why not pop along to the bird hide (near Presthope Car Park) where hopefully you will be able to see some birds up close.
This won't take place if it is raining as we wouldn't risk the birds getting cold and wet.

There will also be two guided walks taking place at 10am and 2pm starting from Presthope Car Park they will last about 1.5 hours and cost just £2 per person. Learn about the history, flora and fauna of Wenlock Edge.
This will take place whatever the weather as it doesn't matter if a Ranger gets cold and wet.


Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Wenlock Edge book launch

A wonderful book has been put together telling the story of Wenlock Edge including chapters on how it was formed, historical land use, flora and fauna and current management. It is a beautiful book, packed with interesting information and backed up with stunning photo's of the Edge.
It would make a lovely gift for anyone who lives locally, visits regularly or even those who have only spent a short time enjoying the area. It is one of those books that you will love to have on the coffee table.

There is a book launch on September 8th at Priory Hall Much Wenlock from 7-9pm where there will be cheese and wine and of course the opportunity to purchase a copy.
It would be useful to have an idea of numbers so if coming please e-mail chris.dunkerley@nationaltrust.org.uk

Monday, 22 August 2011

Bird Ringing

Last week we did a spot of bird ringing, the aim was to catch a few migratory species before they head back South for the Winter. If the birds are caught again as they migrate or at their destination it will give us a better idea of the routes they take and the conditions of the habitat they are using. This can flag up any problems as the birds are weighed and measured before being ringed and each subsequent time they are caught, the weights can then be compared. The birds are now starting to move South slowly, feeding up as they go on berries, small insects and flies, they are trying to put on fat reserves to increase their chances of migrating successfully.
To catch the birds we erected a mist net and then played a recording of Chiffchaffs and Willow warblers to draw the birds towards the net, the nets cause no harm and all birds are extracted by trained bird ringers.
We had a very successful few hours with the first bird being a bit of a surprise, a Spotted Flycatcher had by chance hit the net. It turned out that the bird was one of this years young, it has therefore started the very long journey South to Africa for the first time.
We also ringed Willow Warblers, Chiffchaff, Blue tit and a very young Robin that still didn't have a red chest.
Juvenile Willow Warbler

Bird Feeder news!

If you have news on our missing bird feeder you can e-mail me at chris.dunkerley@nationaltrust.org.uk
There are still 2 feeders up at the bird hide so it is still worth a visit.

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Over The Edge

Plenty of entries are coming in for our 17.5-18 mile challenge event on the 23rd of October from both walkers and runners.
If you don't know the details they are as follows;
As part of the National Trust’s Walking Festival later this year, there will be an 18 mile walk or run along Wenlock Edge on 23 October 2011.

This is a new and exciting venture encouraging people to get out and about and explore a natural feature that is actually visible from space.


Participants will assemble at Much Wenlock and be transported to Craven Arms by coach where the walk will start taking in Wilderhope Manor, an Elizabethan country house as well as passing through semi-natural ancient woodlands with great views across the Shropshire countryside.


The walk will finish at historic Much Wenlock, the birthplace of the modern Olympiad.


Chris Dunkerley, Assistant Ranger for the National Trust on Wenlock Edge, said: “This event is a great way of encouraging people to be active in the great outdoors and to enjoy this beautiful landscape. It’s a great place for doing physical exercise and beats going to the gym.


“It is hoped that next year this event will be expanded into a full marathon reflecting the fact that the 2012 Olympic Games are taking place in London.”


The walk costs £12.50 per person which includes refreshments and coach transfer, it is open to walkers and runners over the age of 14. 14 -18 year olds must be accompanied by an adult.
To book your place either call Emily Knight on 01694 725000 or e-mail
emily.knight@nationaltrust.org.uk