Video

Day 23 – 30 Days Wild

Video for the Wild

#30DaysWild
#30DaysWild

My favourite local patch – and why it matters to me:

Ode to a Secret River – the poem I mention in the video.

Thanks for visiting 😀

Video

Day 21 – 30 Days Wild

New Green Space

wpid-img_20150621_174434.jpg Longbridge, in South Birmingham – the birth place and former home of Rover – has a new High Street and Green Space!  It’s on the site of where the said factory used to be.  The River Rea that runs through the area has had a habitat and Green Space created around it, and it’s pretty much established and looking lush now! 😀

Today I explored it after purchasing Father’s Day gifts (with my trusty mobile to hand for snaps and clips).

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The car park of the newly located Bournville College, with Green Space along side it, some of the old Rover site on the other side.
People and nature co-existing beautifully.
People and nature co-existing beautifully.

I saw a Grey Wagtail (which have some yellow feathers) down there to left of where the lad on the bike was.  The video below isn’t great but you can hear it calling 😛

The middle of the new Green Space, looking towards the chap on the bike.
The middle of the new Green Space, looking towards the chap on the bike.  This is the bridge you see in the distance.
Where this newly created habitat ends.
Where this newly created habitat ends.

I was really pleased that this new place is now a good feeding area for House Martins, there were quite a few wizzing and swooping around 🙂

Thanks for visiting 😀

Gallery

Day 16 – 30 Days Wild

“Invite a friend into nature”

#30DaysWild
#30DaysWild

Today my friend Gary (mentioned in previous posts) and I visited the Wolseley Centre – Staffordshire Wildlife Trust HQ!

We’ve had great day, the weather was wonderful.  We both hadn’t been before.  I was impressed by the variety of habitats (grassland, lakes, rivers and woodland) and species.

Today’s challenge was “invite a friend into nature”, but it was also chance for Gary to brush up on his photography skills  (I shall document what we saw below!)  And in line with the challenge, I did my best to teach Gary about all the various creatures we came across and the bird songs we heard.

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We saw Swallows and House Martins flying above the centre.
We saw Swallows and House Martins flying above the centre.
We saw this Bee and Bumble Bees on the Purple Wallflower at the entrance of the centre.
And this Bee and Bumble Bees on the Purple Wallflower at the entrance of the centre.
Not seen Honeysuckle in such a deep yellow before :)
Not seen Honeysuckle in such a deep yellow before 🙂
Gary and myself before our wild walk.  Photobombed by a Mallard! ;)
Gary and myself before our wild walk. Photobombed by a Mallard! 😉
Whilst Gary looked through my binoculars, I told him about what he was observing.
Whilst Gary looked through my binoculars, I told him about what he was observing (nice shirt!)
A wild sculpture, I assume it's a bench?
A wild sculpture!
This time we were photobombed by a Canada Goose! ;)
This time we were photobombed by a Canada Goose! 😉
If you remember, I love Oak Trees!  This individual has been adopted by Philip Rainsbury and Sue Haycock :)
If you remember, I love Oak Trees! This individual has been adopted by Philip Rainsbury and Sue Haycock 🙂
A cute baby Rat!
Can you spot the baby Rat?
Gary's first ever Chaffinch - to his knowledge.
Gary’s first ever Chaffinch – to his knowledge 😛
One of my favourites of Gary's snaps, a Great Tit in flight.
One of my favourites of Gary’s snaps, a Great Tit in flight.
Some grassland management.
Some grassland management (I have the camera now)
We were watching a male Blackcap.
We were watching a male Blackcap.
A disheveled Peacock Butterfly.
A disheveled Peacock Butterfly (by me)
A Common Blue Butterfly (Gary has his camera back)
A Common Blue Butterfly (Gary has his camera back)
But who too this one?!
But who took this one?!
Willow seeds settled on the pond.
Willow seeds settled on the pond.
Giant Leaves, Giant Snail!
Giant Leaves, Giant Snail!
A Terrapin?!  I was shocked to see this.  Taken with a lens kindly leant by a very friendly chap from Stoke (walking past)
A Terrapin?! I was surprised to see this. Taken by Gary with a lens kindly lent by a very friendly chap from Stoke (walking past)
St. John's Wort.
St. John’s Wort.
A stunning sculpture - very talented work!
A stunning sculpture – very talented work!

There’s still a little bit more for us to explore, looking forward to the next visit! 😀

Caught in a web of wildlife.
Caught in a web of wildlife.

Thanks for reading 🙂

Gallery

Day 15 – 30 Days Wild

#30DaysWild
#30DaysWild

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Today I went a 30 minute walk along the Worcester & Birmingham Canal from Selly Oak, heading south towards Bournville 🙂

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I’m not against cyclists, at all, but it would have been a lot more peaceful – and easier to take photos – if I didn’t have to get out of the way of people on bikes every 2 minutes! 😛

A person on there bike in the distance.
A person on their bike in the distance.

Along the way I heard plops in the water, a couple times I hoped it was a Water Vole, but it turned out to be fish.  I didn’t see much Wildlife, the odd Moorhen and Mallard – so I decided to focus on the flora I came across and just before I came to end of my walk I came across something I deem as special.  Below is what I saw:

Urban art, with a crumbling wall and wildflowers - I think it looks beautiful.
Urban art, with a crumbling wall and wildflowers – I think it looks beautiful.
I love seeing plants growing out of walls, likes this Fern and Buddleja.
I love seeing plants growing out of walls, likes this Fern and Buddleja.
Look! Red hot pokers! (Kniphofia)
Look! Red hot pokers! (Kniphofia)
I also love seeing strips of Wildflower like this - Poppies, Horsetails and Daisies.
I also love seeing strips of Wildflower like this – Poppies, Plantains and Daises
I'm used to seeing this at Wetland Reserves, like Upton Warren - Yellow Flag Iris.
I’m used to seeing this at Wetland Reserves, such as Upton Warren – Yellow Flag Iris.
I had to pass under a couple of bridges.
I had to pass under a couple of bridges.
Honeysuckle - one of my favourites, unusually growing out of the side of the bank.
Honeysuckle – one of my favourites, unusually growing out of the side of the bank.
And here it is again, this time growing somewhere more typical.
And here it is again, this time growing somewhere more typical.
A closer view for you.
A closer view for you.
Forget-me-not (and Cleavers).
Forget-me-not (and Cleavers to left)

Just as my allocated 30 minutes was coming to an end, I came across this beauty below! 😀

A Marsh Orchid (I think).
A Purple Orchid (unsure as to specific species/variety).

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People can sit and watch it grow.
People can sit and watch it grow.
Had to end on a closer image.
Had to end on a closer image.

Thanks for visiting 🙂

Gallery

Day 8 – 30 Days Wild

A Tale of Discovery

#30DaysWild
#30DaysWild

Yesterday was a very long day…  The Beach Clean only lasted two minutes, but there was the early start, the traveling and finding somewhere with WiFi (the connection was awfully slow) not far from the beach – so I could finish yesterday’s blog and do a blog for that day – to share what I had done before the journey back home.  Getting to grips with my friend Gary’s video editing software and waiting for the video to upload to YouTube was very time consuming.  We both got home very late!

More positively; this morning I caught up on Countryfile!  Which funnily enough was in Somerset for yesterday’s episode!  I decided in the afternoon I would venture a little into the South Birmingham/North Worcestershire countryside (which I grew up next door to) 🙂  I came across three discoveries, one more exciting than the other!

1. An old brick bridge that is part of a Public Footpath – which leads from suburban greenspace into the countryside – has been cleared underneath, revealing it fully and making it a lot more accessible to walk under.  The tree lined path that leads away below the bridge had been tidied as well!

Fly tipping removed
Fly tipping removed
Trees cut back etc
Trees cut back etc
Princess Diana Way
Princess Diana Way

2. Two flights of steps have been created/installed!  On either side of Princess Diana Way – a short walk down from the bridge.  You walk up into a meadow (unfortunately not pictured below) with the Farmer’s field going round it.

Easy access
Easy access
Country Park Chic
Country Park Chic

I followed the steps leading up the other side, to pass over the old bridge and come back on myself – to follow another Public Footpath which leads you deaper into the countryside, through an underpass to the other side of the M5 Motorway.  I took a few snaps before that.

Field of Wheat with Lower Hill Farm in the distance
Field of Wheat with Lower Hill Farm in the distance
Top of the bridge with facing away from the farm
On the bridge facing away from the farm
On the bridge facing the farm
On the bridge facing the farm

3. I’m a fair distance away from the bridge now on the other side of the M5, I’ve just had a brief explore of Doctor’s Coppice and have come back into the meadow I’ve just walked across.  The pictures and captions below will end the tale 😉

Said meadow, full of Buttercups
Said meadow, full of Buttercups
Something's hiding in the middle...
Something’s hiding in the middle…
It's a Roe Doe!
It’s a Roe Doe!
Gracefully prances to the coppice
Gracefully prances to the coppice
Impression of where she lay
Impression of where she lay

Thanks for taking time to read my blog 🙂

Video

Day 4 – 30 Days Wild

“Discover urban wildness and mini habitats.”

I was at work again today, so went with a simple Random Act of Wildness – on the days I’m not at work they’ll be somewhat elaborate 😉  I chose “Discover urban wildness and mini habitats.” – from the booklet and decided I would complete this challenge by walking home from work and passing by certain places and stopping when something catches my eye etc.  Again, I filmed (with my phone) and have a video for you to see!

Brownfield along the Northfield Relief Road.
Brownfield along the Northfield Relief Road.

BYPASS 
I left Sainsbury’s and walked down the relief road/bypass, knowing a short walk down it there is a Brownfield site adjacent and that I’d see something there.  A patch of land with scrub and a smattering of wildflowers – Poppies being the more obvious flower.  I witnessed a skirmish between two male House Sparrows and heard a Dunnock and Blackcap singing.  At the top there is a really nice amount of Ivy growing onto of some Hawthorn.

Ivy on top of Hawthorn
Ivy on top of Hawthorn

The Dunnock and Blackcap were somewhere in the Ivy.  A short distance past the Ivy is a Alder tree, which had a Harlequin Ladybird on it – which features in the video.

Buttercups growing in an unkempt feature thing
Buttercups growing in an unkempt feature thing

BUZZING
Off the bypass is Bristol Road South, I crossed over and headed down there and came across some Buttercups growing on top of some sort of feature; a raised garden brick-structure-thing and saw a few Bees flying around!  I climbed on top to get a closer look etc.

BROOK
I carried on down the road and admired the grass verge that separates both lanes, as some parts of it haven’t been mown – to deliberately leave strips of wildflower!  I passed by a lovely park called Manor Farm Park, but decided not to venture into the park and head on down to Merritts Brook Greenway, where I took the pictures blow and end my short film.

Wild Garlic (Ramsons) flowers past their best
Wild Garlic (Ramsons) flowers past their best
A bit of Fungi
A bit of Fungi

I’ll say no more and let the video say the rest 😉  Enjoy! 🙂