introducing wildlife walking at great chalfield

Before I get to the substance of today’s post, and introduce you to an excellent experience, I have a little project in mind to share.  As a follow up to yesterday’s post I want to invite you to join me in posting about the animal and bird kingdom’s nesting habits. It would be great if you spot a nest, or burrow or other dwelling and  photograph it and perhaps we could build some sort of mutual animal estate agency network for spying on little things getting on with their every days lives. I know bloggers do like to post nest pictures, so if you would like to take part, drop me a line or a comment and a link and we can perhaps become nosy neighbours. Who knows what we might end up spying on.

Right, on with the main part of this post.  I spent a grand afternoon on Tuesday walking around the estate at Great Chalfield with a very knowledgeable and companionable guide, Charlie Moores. Charlie and his family have the good fortune to live on the estate and I know if I lived there I would be reluctant ever to be prised away again.

Wiltshire Nature Walks is a new venture at Great Chalfield started by Charlie this year , with the intention of  introducing the visitor to the abundant wildlife present around the manor. He introduces the walks here, so you might wish to read his own words, rather than my ramblings. As well as daily walks,  there will be dawn chorus walks on Saturday mornings for the rest of April. I can imagine few finer spots to be able to witness and experience the phenomenon that is the dawn chorus. The picture shows the manor house bathed in dawn light at about 6.00am last Saturday.

In the company of two other very interesting adults and 3 children, we had an excellent afternoon in the sunshine, spotting birds, butterflies, bees and wild flowers in a variety of habitats, as well as learning more about the history and geography of Great Chalfield. Charlie is an outstanding ornithologist and can not only identify ANY bird from about 100 paces by its call before he see it, but can charm the little things out of the trees too. Literally. We could hear a Chiffchaff calling and he called back until it hopped so close we could almost touch it. Now that’s what I call skill.

So if you are in this part of Wiltshire, visiting  Bath or Lacock Abbey or Great Chalfield itself, you might want to spend a couple of hours being informed and entertained by an enthusiastic and knowledgeable  naturalist. I found the whole experience richly rewarding. Thank you Charlie.

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6 thoughts on “introducing wildlife walking at great chalfield

  1. Sounds wonderful! Wish I were in fact in the area. We did visit Bath on my very first trip to England when I was about 10 – I think I must be due another!

  2. I am sitting here dreaming of what it would be like to live near such beautiful and old structures with so much history. Charlie must have been a wonderful guide. I guess he could be called a bird whisperer. Will you go on any of the dawn chorus walks?

    I will try and take some pictures of nests in these parts. Count me in!

    1. Delighted you will be nest spotting.
      I am very lucky to live in this beautiful part of the world-it feels like a privilege. Charlie was a wonderful guide and I am sure he will love the term “bird whisperer”. I am not sure I will be able to get on any of the dawn chorus walks-life looks as if it will get in the way.

  3. Oh thank you for posting this Judith, we must really try and get to Great Chalfield this year (it is on my “list” and has been for a few years!) I have done the dawn chorus walk at Slimbridge some years ago, which was great fun, and very informative, but rather too popular!

    I will be keeping alert for nests!

  4. Judith, what can I say but thankyou. So, thankyou!
    And ‘bird whisperer’ – I can see the t-shirt/book/movie now…
    See you again up at GC one day.
    And of course, all welcome.

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