Nature Reserve Spotlight: Bubbenhall Wood
The nature reserves in the Bubbenhall area have quickly become my favourite over the past year. Bubbenhall Wood & Meadows, Old Nun Wood, Wappenbury, and Ryton Pools & Wood all border on each other and form part of the Dunsmore Living Landscape project. A National Heritage funded project to restore important wildlife habitats between Leamington, Rugby and Coventry. The reserves are interconnected and it is easy to follow the footpaths between each one, though they are massive so it may take a long time to walk around the entire area.
Throughout 2019 I spent many hours walking around each reserve and have recently come to the realisation that I should be writing about what species I’ve seen and start drawing attention to the great work Warwickshire Wildlife Trust are doing. I’ve decided to do it in season form and will add photos to the same post as I visit in each season. As I have recently been to Bubbenhall I’m starting with Winter.
Winter (Late December to early March)
I was at a boardgame café in Leamington on Friday evening when my friend and fellow nature enthusiast suggested journeying out into the winter cold to walk around Bubbenhall wood the following day. We left around 12.30 on Saturday and parked at the Bubbenhall Warwickshire Wildlife Trust carpark. It was a wonderful winters day, with washed out blue skies and a heavy frost on the ground.
Walking around nature reserves in the winter is less about the different insects as they are all gone and more about the landscape and wintering birds on the pools. Most of the fungi from Autumn has crumbled away and the only survivors are the various bracket fungi on rotten logs.
Spring (late March to early June)
Summer (late June to early August)
I’m skipping Spring for the time being and jumping straight into the best time to visit a nature reserve – Summer! The insects are sunbathing, birds are flying and the flowers are in full bloom. It was whilst walking around Bubbenhall meadows that I spotted my first two Green Woodpeckers. I rounded a corner and nearly didn’t spot them both resting on the path.
Autumn (late August to early December)