For the first time in a long time I went up to a large woodland to make a change from my usual river trip. This was actually the first time I’ve visited this woodland on my own which meant I could take it slow and quiet to try and not scare everything away.
As soon as I arrived and got out of the car, before I even got my camera out of the car, I spotted a Red Squirrel in a tree next to the car park. Luckily it stayed fairly still long enough for me to get a half decent photo.
Starting my walk it felt quite eery with the overcast sky, the light wind blowing the trees and the only noise being my footsteps and the creaking branches above me. Soon though the birds started to trickle through the canopy, including Chaffinches, Coal Tits and a few Jays. Unfortunately, it started to rain a little so I took shelter for a few minutes just to protect my camera, this happened a couple of times during my visit.
I knew this woodland was home to the, increasingly common in Ireland, Great Spotted Woodpecker because I had seen one before ages ago so I was on the lookout, and sure enough after a while I saw a male fly up to the top of a tree trunk, sadly it was a bit distant, but it was great to see and hear one after so long.
As I was making my way back to the car more wildlife started to appear, lots of Blackbirds, Mistle Thrushes, Song Thrushes, Goldfinches, Greenfinches and a second Red Squirrel ran across the path ahead of me. I’ll definitely be going back soon.