There are not many things that will persuade Leaders to set their alarms for 4.30am (apart from a flight to somewhere warm on holiday perhaps?) but the annual Dawn Chorus event is unmissable.
For the third year our location was Ladderstile Farm in Bosley – allowing a walk through woodland down to the banks of the River Dane, this time on a beautiful sunny morning with fields overlaid with strands of mist.
Leader Martin gave an introduction to the different birdsongs we might expect to hear during the morning and Leader Dave helped us identify those calls as we walked through the early morning dew.
Before we set off on our walk we honed our listening skills by producing a sound map of the natural and background noises all around us. Explorers Milly, Ellie and Joanna won prizes for their brilliant sound maps.
The farmyard was a great place to start with House Sparrows, Collared Doves, Swallows and Pied Wagtails flitting amongst the buildings.
Blackbirds, Song Thrushes and Wrens sang constantly on the walk. We got good views of a pair of Blackcaps and also a pair of Long-tailed tits. Goldfinches were singing in the hedges on the way back.
The walk ended with a barbecue breakfast cooked by our fabulous catering crew Susan, Liz, Adam and Julian. There were lots of compliments on the delicious bacon butties – the bacon was kindly donated by Barrows Butchers in Bollington.
Vegetarian, pork and beef sausages were also on the menu with fresh free range eggs. Many of the rolls were made by Leader Martin who likes to do a bit of baking in his spare time. Bowls of steaming porridge were topped with healthy dollops of honey and jam (and one bowl of just honey was also served up!).
Thank you to Rose and Peter Brocklehurst for hosting our event at their wonderful farm.