I’m not sure how many pics of us looking at birds in the woods I can include, but this is us with Prof Mark Whittingham – birder (though I suspect twitcher in fact) extroirdinaire and a skilled communicator of his knowledge and enthusiasm.
What a wonderful week the students had with him and with Dr Janet Simkin learning how to identify these species. Sadly I couldn’t get out on the plants days – I snuck along for the final bird day. My personal bird highlight was watching the many nuthatches at the top of the trees, but the variety of bird species around the small cottage and pastures before we entered the woodland was phenomenal: lapwings (probs my absolute favourite – with golden plover), spotted woodpeckers, song thrush, mistle thrush, blackbird, swallows … and others I’ve forgotten.
Mark told me he absolutely loved working with these guys, and it was the best student group he had ever had – partly cos he had actuallydone some proper birding. Thanks for giving our students an amazing experience, Mark.