Tiff

11 Mar 2018 76 views
 
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photoblog image BATTY

BATTY

 

 

Harridge Woods nature reserve is home to Somerset Wildlife Trust’s award winning bat house. Restored from a tumble down cottage by volunteers and staff, Keeper’s Cottage is home to at least seven different bat species including the Lesser Horseshoe, Brown Long-eared, Natterers, Daubenton, Pipistrelle sp and Greater Horseshoe bats. A rare Barbastelle bat was also found using the cottage as refuge from freezing winter temperatures.

 

A rich variety of woodland birds can be spied amongst the trees including great spotted and green woodpecker, nuthatch and goldcrest. Song thrushes can be heard singing and sparrow hawk, kestrel, buzzard and raven nest in the woods. The Mells River and streams attract kingfisher, mallard, moorhen, grey heron, grey wagtail and dipper.

You may also catch a glimpse of water voles or otters travelling the Mells River that flows through the reserve.

BATTY

 

 

Harridge Woods nature reserve is home to Somerset Wildlife Trust’s award winning bat house. Restored from a tumble down cottage by volunteers and staff, Keeper’s Cottage is home to at least seven different bat species including the Lesser Horseshoe, Brown Long-eared, Natterers, Daubenton, Pipistrelle sp and Greater Horseshoe bats. A rare Barbastelle bat was also found using the cottage as refuge from freezing winter temperatures.

 

A rich variety of woodland birds can be spied amongst the trees including great spotted and green woodpecker, nuthatch and goldcrest. Song thrushes can be heard singing and sparrow hawk, kestrel, buzzard and raven nest in the woods. The Mells River and streams attract kingfisher, mallard, moorhen, grey heron, grey wagtail and dipper.

You may also catch a glimpse of water voles or otters travelling the Mells River that flows through the reserve.

comments (13)

Where's the belfry? smile
Chris: Well err..

This is somewhere I pass quite often on a favourite walk with a close personal friend
  • Ray
  • Not Germany...
  • 11 Mar 2018, 00:39
If I was a woodpecker then I would like to be called "Great Spotted", Chris...
Chris: I often call you lots of things Squire!
A lovely image - but I think I'm most enamored by the mention of bats! I LOVE them!
Chris: They are protected by law in the UK Elizabeth, no one dare disturb them
  • Alan
  • Great Britain (UK)
  • 11 Mar 2018, 06:50
Sounds like a rich wildlife habitat. Could the cottage have been part of a mill complex at one time? I ask because of the tumbling store,m flowing in to the other stream.
Chris: The structure is known as Keeper's Cottage. What he was keeping exactly I'm not sure
  • Philine
  • Germany
  • 11 Mar 2018, 06:57
Oh, this is an enchanted place with so many woodland birds! The waterfall is heavily rushing down, it might have rained very much.
Chris: The water in this valley is very much managed by the hand of man in former times Philine. There was once a lot of industry around here
Une renovation bien utile pour la sauvegarde des chauve-souris et de pouvoir ainsi profiter de tous ces oiseaux est vraiment interessant
Bonne journéeà  toi
Chris: Thank you Claudine.

This was once industry but is now wildlife habitat
Sounds like an amazing place, Chris.
Chris: Yes indeed it is. The Mendips, in our part of the world, at least, have industrial remains in many places
Very interesting info and a pleasing snap
Chris: Taken in pretty low light, as an experiment
  • Lisl
  • England
  • 11 Mar 2018, 08:18
Imagine trying to identify so many different bats, Chris, and then find a rarity!
Chris: It takes all sorts Lisl but I find bats do not turn me on in the way birds 'n' butterflies do
  • Philine
  • Germany
  • 11 Mar 2018, 10:35
"The bat house was once the gamekeepers cottage, built by agricultural reformist John Billingsley, whose family held the Ashwick Grove Estate in the late 18th century. The mansion house was a mile further up the valley and is now in ruins. In former days, Keepers Cottage would have looked rather grand, with gothic arched windows, and was certainly built to impress. When the Somerset Wildlife Trust was approached to buy it in 2006 it was derelict and home to many bats, which were extremely vulnerable as the roof and windows had disappeared in the 70s, after the last tenants moved out.
To get the cottage ship-shape for the bats to move into, the walls were re-pointed and chimneys capped off to provide roosting sites, and all the doors and windows were fitted with grills to prevent curious visitors from disturbing the bats. Volunteers cleared debris from the tumbledown structure, enabling a new floor and bat loft to be built above the old washhouse. A recycled staircase was installed to gain access for monitoring, and roosting niches added to an upstairs cupboard.
As a builder and carpenter, Phil Dampier is a key volunteer. He said: I have thoroughly enjoyed working on Keepers Cottage. It has been very rewarding working for the benefit of the bats, especially as they used the new loft immediately after it was finished!"
Chris: Thank you kindly Philine
This sounds like a place I would love. I have never heard of a water vole. Makes me wonder if it is like our muskrat.
Chris: Ratty in Wind in the Willows was a water vole, a semi-aquatic rat-like rodent
Sounds like a great spot just to sit and watch!
Chris: It certainly is just that Tom
It reminds me of a place where I usually go to play as a child.

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