Thursday, 5 March 2015

Week 59 04/03/2015 - Black Headed Gulls and a Cheeky Jakdaw

Photo Blog Week 59 - Wed 4 March 2015

Shortly before leaving home I plugged my phone in for a boost charge as I now use it to track my route then, in the car halfway to the Park, I realised I'd not gone back to pick it up. Next, on arrival, I haven't brought my building sand bag which is a good size, tough and has stability and weight in the wind for litter collection. Setting off, I realize I haven't brought my reading glasses which I need when wearing contact lenses which I always do when taking part in outside activities. All in all, not a good start.
Ignoring my forgetfulness, the rest was a somewhat uneventful day. No seasonal extremes though a seriously chill wind in exposed areas.

route: The Stables; East Lodge track; Turfhouse Meadow; The Lantern; Park Moor

Daffodils Soon!

Hereford Cattle

Regular readers will be aware of the errant Herefords who spent the summer on Cluse Hey. Repeated attempts to remove them back to the farm for the winter have failed as they have become ferel. Oddly, they started to 'hang' with the red deer on the moor and even learnt to jump low fences which would be expected to contain cattle successfully.
A few weeks ago, after leaving food and bedding for them, they were tempted down to Turfhouse Meadow and the gate back to the Moor closed behind them.
Since then, several attempts to coral then into the farmers trucks have failed and they unfortunately now include the archery field in their grazing area.

...and three in the Archery Field

This old conifer long ago stripped of its bark shows twisted fibres in the structure of the trunk.
I am not an arborist but I assume this is nature providing strength and flexibility.

Owl box
Is it just me seeing Darth Vader?

Current schemes include tree planting in many parts of the Park ensuring continuation of the environment as older trees age out

The Lantern

Looking up the clearing to The Lantern.

View back down the clearing into distance is to Manchester Airport.
The Control Tower id the black topped tower 1/3 from left.

There are plans this year for an interactive art installation involving the windows of The Lantern...  watch this space.

Front Door: Turfhouse Meadow and Pond; Gardens and House; Cheshire inc' Woodford and Manchester airports
Side Window: Manchester City Centre above The Cage
Park Moor and Lantern Wood

route: Park Moor; Knightslow Wood; Drinkwater Meadow; Main Car Park; Mill Pond (W); Timberyard cafe

AT this time of year watch out for the purple branch tips on Silver Birch.
When the lighting is right, young Birch woods produce a purple haze.

Stream tumbling across Drinkwater Meadow

Wall Repairs

At the edge of Drinkwater Meadow under the pines several sections of wall have bulged badly to the point of imminent collapse. Being an area popular with children den building this have risen to the top of the endless work queue.

Large sections have top be stripped out to deal with problems low in the wall.

Re-usable stone is laid out organised by size in preparation for the rebuild

new foundation in place using a lot of new stone

new open section showing debris blown and rained into the wall

Inner parts of wall collapsing and outer shell spreading out leaving holes

This cheeky Jackdaw has the behaviour of a seaside Seagull of a city centre Pigeon.
Watching from the chair back next to me it repeatedly moved onto the table and toward my sandwich.

route: Timberyard cafĂ©; Mill Pond; The Knott; Westparkgate Drive; Pursefield; ridge; Paddock Cottage; Pursefield Wood; Darcy's Pond; Drinkwater Meadow; Main Car Park

 Family time by the Mill Pond

   Black Headed Gull
Rhody' bashing continues a pace close to Paddock Cottage

Reflections of Pursefield ridge trees in Darcy's pond

route: Main Car Park; Picnic Area; Crow Wood; Mill Pond; The Stables; Estate Office (the House) - End

The Black Headed Gulls are starting to display their summer plumage, i.e. the dark brown cowl which gives them their 'Black Headed' name. In winter, this marking fades and all that is left is a smudge behind the eye. RSPB - Black Headed Gull
Thanks to my colleague Delta-Graham for spotting this and pointing it out to me. 

Canada Geese are back

A new toy has arrived for the Ranger team. A Polaris all terrain vehicle.
Looking a bit like a moon buggy with a cab is has independently driven wheels and should get out to the deer and fences across difficult ground including boggy areas and get across snow better than anything they've previously had access to.

The main gate posts from the A6 are Listed Grade II by English Heritage.
So, if you wonder why the NT don't widen the entrance, that's one reason.
Another is a bit lower down where the drive crosses a National Rail owned narrow bridge over the railway.


Today's track and profile

provided by Android phone App.
(manually entered from memory due to leaving phone at home)

total: 6.5 miles (10.5 km)  4 hr 45 min

This Time Last Year

Have a look at This Time Last Year  

Week 15 05/03/14 - West, Quiet and Green

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