Monday, 30 April 2012

Marathon and Half Marathon

Entries for both the Marathon and Half Marathon are now closed!
There are 161 taking on the full marathon and 190 doing the half.

Somebody has helpfully put a route map on Map MY Run which you should be able to find here http://www.mapmyrun.com/routes/view/91461851  don't be put off by the altitude graph!!

Over the Edge Marathon is now on facebook!

Everyone should have recieved a route description, we are aware that a couple of sections around Wilderhope Manor require mowing/strimming, this will be done in the next few weeks.

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Dawn Chorus

Last week i met a group of 15 people at 6am in Presthope car park for a walk around the woods with Martin George of CJ's Wild bird feed. With Martin's expert help we were able to identify 14 species of bird just from their songs and calls. We visited a range of different habitats so that we could hear a wider range of birds, venturing away from the woodland a little also gave us a break from hearing the Chiffchaffs who were very noisy and in good numbers.
There were a few birds not heard this year that we did hear last year including Pied Flycatcher and Whitethroat, Martin explained that this was due to a weather system effectively blocking them from travelling. These species should have made it to the Edge by now.
Birds that we did hear were
Great Spotted Woodpecker,
Nuthatch,
Wren,
Blackbird,
Robin,
Chiffchaff,
Willow Warbler,
Song Thrush,
Great Tit,
Blue Tit,
Long Tailed Tit,
Carrion Crow,
Greenfinch,
Chaffinch.

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Kestrel boxes

Last week Stuart from Chelmarsh Bird Ringers and myself put up a couple of nest boxes, much bigger than the usual ones we put up they are aimed at Kestrels which regularly hunt in the area. The boxes might also be used by Jackdaws or Crows but hopefully not Pigeons or Squirrels. They may have been put a bit late to be used this year but you never know.


Yesterday saw the return to the Edge of Willow Warblers, joining the Blackcaps and Chiffchaffs that arrived over the previous few weeks. House Martins were also seen today and i believe a few Swallows are also in the area.
Meanwhile our resident birds are well under way with breeding, plenty of bird boxes have nests in them with some even having eggs. Please don't look in boxes yourself as disturbance can cause adult birds to abort the nest, checking boxes is carried out by trained bird ringers who hold licences.

Monday, 2 April 2012

Railway clearance

Yesterday we once again had the wonderful help of the Shropshire and Staffordshire National Trust Volunteers (SSNTV). Also present was Beccy Speight, National Trust Director for the Midlands, it was great to have Beccy there and we all really appreciated it.

The task was to clear young trees from part of the old railway embankment in Northway Wood, this will let in more light which is beneficial to a wide range of wildlife and also is more appealing to those that walk, bike or horse ride along this lovely bridleway.

The sun shone all day but for most of it we were in the shade which provided lovely conditions in which to work, everyone got stuck in and there were soon two fires being loaded with branches. As we moved quickly along the bank it became apparent that a third fire was required so Beccy was given the task of getting it started under the watchfull eye of Ron, the groups chief firelighter.

After plenty of cake at lunchtime the work continued and the result at the end of the day was 30 metres of bank cleared! Thankyou everyone for your help, look forward to seeing you on Friday.