Please see the photo gallery above for some of our September/October highlights.
In order of display:
Late evening sunlight on Ash leaves
Red Admiral butterfly
Canary-shouldered Thorn (photography by Jonathan Wallace)
Fallen leaves gathering on Lime Ride
Dusty the Frog
Sunlight on the woodland floor
Autumn is a big time for us in the woodland. Things get busy as both the tree felling and planting season gets underway. We have over 900 trees on order to plant this season, which are due to arrive mid month. If that's not enough to keep us busy, fitted in around this, we are continuing our tree felling programme.
First up, we are halo thinning around a couple of medium sized oak trees. This involves removing the younger, competing trees surrounding the oaks in order for them to receive the light and space that they need to thrive. In other words, we create a ‘halo’ effect around each oak. We have measured their girth and will now do so every year as we monitor their progress. It is hoped that they will develop full crowns and wider trunks, possibly becoming future veteran trees – long outlasting our time in the wood!
Many animals, no matter how big or small, have their favourite hang-outs. A place to rest or bed down that is both safe and comfy. They return to them time and time again when not out foraging for food. Most often, they are tucked away and go unnoticed – but occasionally we do stumble across a few:
Dusty the frog took us by surprise. It popped its head out of a hole at the base of a birch tree we were working next to. Unfortunately, it got showered in wood shavings as we unknowingly happened to be cutting up rhododendron inches away from its cubbyhole!
This migrant hawker dragonfly took to hanging on the same hawthorn branch time after time throughout summer when not hawking for prey. Although out in the open, it blended in so well with its backdrop that it was almost impossible to spot.
This hare has become a firm favourite. We think it is a well grown youngster and it lays up in the same long grasses every day before going out to forage in the late afternoon. It watches us closely with its beady eye – at first it would panic and run off but now it is so used to us that it tends to stay put.
The red squirrel gang continue to hide from us. They have completely changed their feeding habits now that it is autumn and they no longer come to our feeder. We did chance upon one playing and rooting around at the bottom end of the wood though and it looked to be in fine fettle.
However, a different animal (we think) did appear at the feeder for a few weeks throughout late summer. This red squirrel has a black tail unlike any of the others. We named him or her Nut-a-Day due to its regular habit of visiting just the once every day to help itself to a single hazelnut. One interesting but pointless fact: it would always pick up a nut from the left side of the feeder – on the one occasion it gathered a nut from the right side, it dropped it and had to scoot down the tree to retrieve it!
Our wildlife camera has proved its weight in gold in providing an insight into the lives of our red squirrels this year. We hope you have enjoyed reading about them!
Woodruff Wood,Longhirst, Morpeth, Northumberland
'Passionate about wildlife & firewood'
T: 07525 841361 (9am - 6pm)
Please feel free to contact us today for further information!
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European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development
'Increasing Productivity of Woodruff Wood Woodfuel (Firewood)'
Woodruff Wood is grateful to have received funding for equipment and infrastructure to support us in the production of firewood