Wildlife Conservation Group in the

Forest of Dean


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8 April 2014

Birch Wood

Grid Ref SO639149


A totally new site for us and it was a beautiful location deep in the forest. The weather was sunny and the site is shielded from the wind by the ridge above so it is ideal for butterflies. We were asked to remove the trees to widen the butterfly corridor and to take out the lower branches of the larch to allow light through. We also removed quite a few tree guards which had been put round the base of young trees many years before and the trunks were now trying to burst through.

We saw about 4 Peacock butterflies and an adder basking in the sun! There were signs of bluebells and foxglove coming through and some little white Wood-sorrel flowers.


ps. The Forestry Commission has had reports of a Wild Boar in Lea Bailey which is as big as a hippopotamus! Hmmm....







This is part of the track leading up to a more open area. The small trees to the right and left of the track were removed.





Peacock Butterfly (Aglais io)

This butterfly is generally single-brooded. However, in good years, a small second brood may appear. Adults may be seen at any time of the year, with warm weather waking them from hibernation. The majority emerge from hibernation at the end of March and beginning of April. These mate and ultimately give rise to the next generation that emerges at the end of July.

Although small decreases in population have been observed, this species seems to be faring well.





At the end of the day, a pile of logs by the fire demonstrate the amount of work we did. Also, the larch in the background show where we took out the lower branches to allow light in.

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