22 December 2016 Blackwater and Poundhill Heath area
of us met up in the Blackwater car park on a bright sunny morning after heavy
overnight rain. There was a Nuthatch in the trees above us, the first of
several seen during the walk that took us eastwards along the track towards
Poundhill Heath. Beneath the beech trees a number of Blackbirds were sifting through
fallen leaves for food as last night’s rain still sparkled on the branches and
twigs above them.
and Pam pointed out several species of lichen growing on a hawthorn by a
gateway including Usnea
walk had been relatively quiet until we reached the heath where in low hawthorns and
birches we found a flock of some 30-40 Reed Buntings that eventually drifted
away in small groups across towards an area of burnt gorse. Some lucky people
also saw a female Yellowhammer, surely the best bird of the morning. As we walked along the edge of
Poundhill Inclosure a female Roe Deer in the bracken chose to retreat into
denser cover as a loose flock of Redwings flew out across the heath from the
conifers of the inclosure.
we took the hoggin track through the inclosure back to the car park Mike served
the biscuits whilst Brian, wearing a suitably seasonal hat, handed round
chocolates. They must have done some good for a up in the trees a few hundred
yards along the track a Firecrest was glimpsed along with a Coal Tit. We waited
and watched for it to reappear, but to no avail. Sheila however had more
patience, and by staying behind was thrilled with excellent views when it
re-appeared and stayed in sight for several minutes.
at the car park we wished one another a Merry Christmas and looked forward to
more enjoyable walks in 2017.