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MEETINGS: Once or twice a month on various days to minimise recurrent clashes with members' other commitments.

We usually meet at the Co-op car park, Church Road, New Mills at 10 am. The number on walks is limited only by having enough seats in cars. Attendance varies with members’ diaries, inclinations and the weather (we are sensible people, not masochists).

Come and join us. There's no limit to the number on the mailing list.

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Next Visit

The visit to Tittesworth Water concludes our 2017 series of adventures. We have been extremely fortunate in our choice of dry days this year meaning none were cancelled because of our variable climate.

We are now starting to plan our schedule for 2018 and it will appear on this web page in February with our walks starting in March.

Our thanks to all the people who have attended this year's Birds and Botany for sharing their knowledge of the plants and animals we have seen and for your good company.

We are always happy to welcome new members. None of us claim to be experts but try to puzzle our way to the names of the organisms we find. If you are interested in joining us or want more information please contact us.

Fred and Dave.


2017 meetings

Thursday 16 February Ethrow Country Park
Tuesday 7 March Chorlton Water Park
Wednesday 29 March Pennington Flash Country Park
Thursday 13 April Reddish Vale Country Park
Tuesday 2 May NT Stannage Edge and Padley Gorge
Wednesday 24 May RSPB Dove Stones
Wednesday 14 June Poynton Coppice and Jacksons' Brickyard LNR
Thursday 6 July DWT Hartington Meadows
Tuesday 25 July RSPB Old Moor
Thursday 10 August NT Longshaw Estate
Tuesday 12 September Tittesworth Water

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TITTESWORTH WATER

(photos taken by Jean)

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Longshaw Estate (photos taken by Jean Windsor)

jwjuvenile robin, enchanters nightshade
spear thistle, tormentil

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eyebright, black medick
fungus? (note no gills), heather

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meadow vetchling (?), cricket (species unknown)
hawkweed, sneezewort

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greater spotted birdwatchers!!!

JULY

RSPB OLD MOOR

Photos taken by

Jean Windsor

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tansy
storksbill
Common Toadflax
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Common Storksbill
crown-vetch
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Crown Vetch
Purple Loosestrife
Weld

Hartington
Meadows

photos taken by
Jean Windsor

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goat's beard

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Stannage Edge
and
Padley Gorge

(photos taken by
Pat and Jean)

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Reddish Vale Country Park

(photos taken by Jean Windsor)
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Pennington Flash
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Miller's Dale
(photos taken by Jean Windsor)

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We started the visit from Miller's Dale car park and used the Monsal Trail to visit Miller's Dale Quarry NR and Priestcliffe Lees NR.

On the Monsal Trail some plant species were spread as a result of the coming of the railways. In the quarry, as well as the limestone flora, there are varieties that tolerate high lead levels.


High Peak Trails

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The Tissington and High Peak Trails use old railway lines to provide footpaths through the White Peak.

The embankments are rich in wildflowers and the Tissington Trail passes close to Hartington Meadows, a Derbyshire Wildlife Trust site.


Lathkill Dale

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Arguably, the finest of Derbyshire limestone dales, Lathkill Dale has been designated a National Nature Reserve. With its steep slopes, ash woodland and glorious hay meadows it is a haven for wild life. In June in the upper part of the dale we can expect to find the rare Jacob's Ladder as well as other species adapted to alkaline soils. On the river itself we would hope to see dippers alongside the coots, moorhens and grey wagtails together with a variety of warblers and possibly redstarts.

NT Longshaw Estate The Longshaw Estate covers the ancient woodlands of Padley Gorge, heather moorland, hay meadows and pasture. There's a wide diversity of bird species including both pied and spotted flycatcher, green woodpecker, cuckoo and skylark. Numerous wild flowers too.
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Poynton Coppice

and

Jacksons' Brickworks

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Chorlton Water Park and Mersey Valley
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WWT Martin Mere
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photos taken by Fred Pickering

The Dee Estuary - Parkgate High Tide Watch
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photos taken by Fred Pickering

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Old Moor
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The Longshaw Estate


click on images to enlarge

Brockholes


A successful trip was made to the fairly new nature reserve at Brockholes near Preston. 7 members of the group enjoyed a walk along the river Ribble which included a 10 minute stop watching a kingfisher on the opposite bank, a walk through an ancient wood and then round the flooded gravel pits stopping at  the 2 hides. Other birds seen included goosander and raven among a good variety.The 'Visitor Village' is an impressive wooden structure floating in one of the lakes.
 

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Watching the Kingfisher
 by the Ribble

View from a hide

The Visitor Village
fungi Images supplied by Dave Pierce. Click on them to enlarge.  
Fungi    

Millers Dale Walk
Images sent by Pat Cooper
click on them to enlarge

In the photo where the group are looking through their binoculars
the group were looking at a dipper, and we did see quite a few more along the river, but we didn't see any water voles as the river was running quite fast. 
We also saw a long tailed tit, nuthatch, buzzard, and a few other common species of birds. 

signpost
bird watching
log in water

In the photo where the group are in the quarry with Jay sat looking at his book, the group were looking for orchids but we were a bit too early to see any.
Some of the flowers we saw were cowslips, water avens, wood anemones, sweet cicely, ground ivy, stitchwort - these are just a few of the many that we spotted.

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inside tunnel

The Chee Tor Tunnels are the two newly opened ones on that stretch of the trail.

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tree by river
group looking at plant


Monsal Dale walk

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Click on images to enlarge.

Then to return to this page click < back button at top left of your screen.

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blue flowers
dandelion
cows
blue tall flower
tree and plant
the botanists
tree avenue
small blue flower
Pictures taken by Pat Cooper.

Goyt Valley

old tree trunk

Sessile Oak
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tree scene
We went up to Taxal Church - then into Hillbridge Wood (DWT nature reserve) & down to the river.
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From there we went back uphill to Knipe & along the track to the Fernilee dam & had lunch. Since it was still dry we went round the reservoir, then down to the river again & followed it back to Taxal.
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7 flowers of Butterbur
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Because we'd been brave the day improved & became sunny & warm, & we saw the first butterfly of the year (Small Tortoiseshell) & a Dipper, & saw & heard Buzzards & Curlews.

 

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2people by stream
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tree scene
2more botanists

Click on images to enlarge.

Then to return to this page click < back button at top left of your screen.

tree by stream


tree with strikingly twisted branch
looking at the ground

Pictures taken by Pat Cooper.

fungi on tree trunk

fallen tree with bracket fungus


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PHOTOS TAKEN BY PAT COOPER
(click on images to enlarge)

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Looking at one of the Lathkill specialities, a Mullein, either Great or Dark - advanced stuff, that's why we've got our books out.

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Anni reading the display board about the other Lathkill special and the jewel in the crown, Jacob's Ladder (see the Miller's Dale pictures).

Unfortunately they were largely over by late August, and we only saw two in flower.

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Scenic shots up into the quarry in the valley side.

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That old tramp getting high on the last of the Meadowsweet.

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Knapweed

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Harebells

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The jumble of rocks is the bed of the river when there is a river. Very seasonal - it comes out of a cave in the upper valley, but rarely in the summer.

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Two photographs taken at One Ash Grange farm, one of three genuine medieval monastic granges above the valley on the south side.

One Ash (to distinguish it from Monyash of course) belonged to the the Cistercians of Roche Abbey in Yorkshire.

No visible medieval remains, date stone of 1699 on one outbuilding.

Features of interest include an ice house and a range of stone pigsties now housing dolls. The Christmas Crib statuary in the icehouse is not medieval - last few years in fact.

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Ice cream stop at the end of the walk

Martin Mere trip

 

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(click on images to enlarge)
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Carsington Water
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Millers Dale walk
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Jacobs Ladder (blue and white varieties)
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some old tramp entirely surrounded by Hogweed
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Knapweed

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Dyers' Greenweed
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photographs taken by Pat C
(click on images to enlarge)
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Hawkweed
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more Hawkweed
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Bloody Cranesbill
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Common Valerian
We travel to a chosen destination, then walk at an appropriate pace, not to cover miles but to enjoy looking at seasonally available wildlife: not only birds and plants, but butterflies, mammals and whatever else we find.
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Goatsbeard seed head
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Bee Orchid
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Common Spotted Orchid
come and join us
bring a packed lunch and a contribution to drivers’ fuel costs
millers dale
Hogweed

binoculars recommended

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some kind of rose

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Birds and Botany outing to Monsal Dale

click on image to enlarge

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Chance meeting with the Cycle Group

click on image to enlarge


September 2017