Amongst the Dead Wood

On day 265 of 365 Days Wild I spent some time in the corner of the Nature Project where there’s a lot of fallen tree trunks and branches. This has created a perfect dead wood habitat area.

Dead wood provides an important habitat for wildlife, offering an array of opportunities for decomposers and other creatures that live in and on the decaying plant matter. There are said to be hundreds of species of invertebrate associated with dead wood. These, in turn, provide a foodsource for other birds, mammals and reptiles. Dead wood can also offers these animals shelter and protection.

Of you ‘d like to know more about the importance of dead wood for wildlife, you.could check out this page from the RSPB or this one from the RHS.

Whilst I was there I spotted several robins singing in the trees, a pair of Mallard ducks on the dyke, and a squirrel passing by along the network of branches along the bank. I didn’t manage to photograph any of them!

I particularly like some of the sculptural forms that you can see in the twisted branches.

I took a little notepad along with me on my outing and thought that I’d make a first attempt at mapping the Nature Project. The pad is very small and is made out of textured, recycled paper. This meant that there wasn’t much space to include detail and my pen occasionally travelled in directions that it didn’t intend it to travel in, but I managed to scribble out a quick plan (whilst sitting on a fallen tree in Dead Wood Corner) that I then redrew once I arrived home. I expect this will be the first of many such maps, as I’d like to ultimately identify all of the trees in the area and also pinpoint the places where different plants, flowers and fungi are mainly found. You can see Dead Wood Corner in the bottom right corner of the map.

Are you involved in any nature projects that are going on near you? Let me know in the comments below.

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