2013 Dawn Chorus
Minutes of the 2012 AGM
Minutes of the 2011 AGM
Chorus list 2011
of the meeting 13/04/2011
of the AGM 13/10/2010
The longstanding path to the playing fields has
been blocked, this has been in use for at least 80 years. To contest
this we will need evidence, so please download and complete the
following forms. Please return them or reply to
Bat Safari 9th of July 2010. 13
people turned up to check the Bat population of the wood.
Using the electonic Bat detectors, the group found 45kh Pipastrelle's
and 55kh (Soprano) Pippastrelle's at a number of locations.
Dawn Chorus 10th April 2010. Nine
people enjoyed a great morning, the
highlight for me was watching Nuthatch's building a nest near the
Birds seen or heard:Tawney Owl,
Song Thrush, Robin, Blackbird, Rook, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Wren, Magpie,
Wood Pigeon, Chffinch, Jay, Starling, Carrion Crow, Great Spotted
Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Stock Dove, Misle Thrush, Jackdaw, Black
Headed Gull, Chiffchaff, Mallard, Blackcap, Dunnock, Nuthatch.
Autumn 2008 - The AGM minutes are
available below. The main news is that the reclamation work to the west
by Herons playing field is now really beginning to bear fruit. The tree
planting programme over the last 4-5 years has arrested the spread of
grassland into the wood and the woodland is becoming restablished in
this area. We will be continuing with the programme on the 29th
November and as part of National Tree Week.
AGM minutes 08/10/08
June & July 2008 - An ordinary meeting of the
Friends was held on the 9th July and the minutes are available below.
This years Bat Safari only
attracted a few hardy souls, probably because of the cool and rainy
conditions. Nevertheless, we were able to get excellent views of the
bats which were feeding low along the edge of wood and Leggatts Campus
playing fields. Although we generally expect to identify Pipistrelles,
we are now on the look out for Noctules which I understand have been
identified elsewhere in Watford.
April & May 2008 - An ordinary meeting of the
Friends was held on the 9th April and the minutes are available below.
On the 19th we undertook a leisurely clean-up/litter pick, looking out
for anything of interest generally in the early Spring. By chance, we
spotted a recent fox den, hidden by brush, but very close to one of the
kissing-gates on the edge of the wood.
The Bluebell Walk on the 26th
April was about ten strong and our timing this year was spot on! The
aim is to protect the native English Bluebell over the invasive Spanish
variety. The English Bluebell, whose bells all hang to one side of the
main stem, appears vivid violet in bright sunlight and we enjoyed
plenty of good views.
Finally, many thanks to Christ Church
& St Mark's for putting on a great show for May
Day. The Friends of Harebreaks Wood were very pleased to be
invited and to support the festivities. Thanks also to our supporters
and volunteers who were on hand answer questions and enquiries from the
public and to distribute information about Harebreaks Wood.
(No written agenda)
March 2008 - We were fortunate to have the expertise of
Austin Hollands and Philip McGovern from the local
RSPB leading the Dawn Chorus on the 29th. Species
Great Tit, Blue Tit, Wood Pidgeon, Rook, Carrion
Crow, Magpie, Jackdaw, Jay, Wren, Robin, Blackbird, Songthrush,
Mistlethrush, Green Woodpecker(heard), Great Spotted Woodpecker, Stock
Dove, Chaffinch, House Sparrow, Starling, Grey Heron, Black Headed
Gull, Herring Gull, Lesser Black Backed Gull.
The Stock Dove was new to most of us, resembles
a feral pigeon and is an Amber List protected species. The
RSPB website has illustrations, so here's a link.
January 2008 - We spent a couple of hours tidying up on the
19th. The bare wood in winter is of real interest and allows us to
monitor and take stock generally. Our next event is the Dawn
Chorus on the Saturday 29th March. It's an early start...
6.00am at the Bill Everett Centre car park. Although it doesn't feel
like it, Sunday marks the start of British Summer Time (BST).
Join us at St Mark's after the bird watch. You are
guaranteed warming refreshments including a bowl of Keiths' delicious,
steaming-hot porridge. Not to be missed!
December 2007 - Many thanks to all who came for our Tree
Planting event (1st Dec). We managed about an hours worth
before the heavens opened and sent us running for cover! But no matter
as the programme is a long term one, aimed at reclaiming areas in the
west of the woods that are becoming sparse or reverting to grassland.
Other local Friends groups were also out and about that day and as part
of the Boroughs' general support of National Tree Week.
Many thanks also to 'The Watford Observer' which
covered our event. If you missed it in the paper the first time, you
can still read all about it here!
October 2007 - Our AGM was on the 10th
October. The agenda and minutes are available below. Perhaps the most
important topic under discussion was the likely impact on the wood of
the proposed housing development at Leggatts Campus. Taylor Wimpey, the
developers, have commissioned a series of reports in support of their
application. For the Habitat Survey Report and the Bat
Survey Report see July & August below. These .pdf
files are quite large and might take a little time to open, depending
on your connection speed.
For all the documents submitted by Taylor Wimpey
(there are 63 of them!), go to the UK Planning Service. The
Application Reference Number is 07/01268/FULM. The UK Planning Service
can also be accessed from Watford Borough Councils web site.
AGM Minutes 10/10/07
August 2007 - A Habitat
Survey Report was carried out by Taylor Wimpey, as part of
their submission to develop Leggatts Campus for housing. This document
shows just how diverse the eco-system of Harebreaks Wood really is.
The 'song thrush', 'mistle thrush' and 'green
woodpecker' are Red and Amber List protected species.
July 2007 - Many thanks to all
of you came to the Bat safari (20th July) and hope
you found it fun and interesting. We identified two species, the Common
pipistrelle and the Soprano pipistrelle. The two are most easily
distinguished using the bat detectors as they echo-locate at different
frequencies (45 kHz and 55 kHz). We are also now really starting to
appreciate how interdependent the wood is with the
surrounding open spaces of Herons recreation ground (South), Leggatts
Campus playing fields (North) and Callowland allotments (West).
We've long suspected that there are bat roosts in the
old school buildings on Leggatts Campus and this was confirmed from
photographs included in a Bat Survey Report carried out in
September on behalf of Taylor Wimpey.
June 2007 - We undertook a Litter
Pick (23rd June) just prior to the June meeting. We are also
keen to establish a formal bio-diversity survey of the wood and we
would welcome any help or expertise you may have to achieve this. On
Saturday, 14th July, 1.30pm we will continue with our own informal
survey. Please come along to help us identify and confirm the various
species. We meet up at the Bill Everett Centre car park.
May 2007 - Hello to all of you who made it
for the Bluebell Walk (5th May). The consensus is
that we were a little too late to see the bluebells at their best.
We've all heard of global warming and even the damp and shaded woodland
probably isn't immune. One cannot fail to notice how much milder our
winters have been lately and how this is affecting our traditional
seasons. Spring is definately starting earier each year and I've
certainly witnessed that many small garden birds are breeding earlier.
In the near future, raising 2-3 broods per season might well be
March 2007 - Many thanks to all the 'early
birders' who made it for the Dawn Chorus (31st
Mar). There was about a dozen of us in all despite the heavy, leaden
and ponderous sky that greeted us. But it was this dense and muffled
air that provided the acoustic treat; and the highlight of the walk -
the woodpeckers! First came the'knock-knock-knock'
of a Great Spotted tapping at the tall stands by Leggatts Way
alternating with the 'yak-yak-yak' call of a Green
in reply. Gradually, we edged closer to the calls of these two noisy
cousins, eventually spotting both individuals. The show ended with the
Green flushing from cover and dive-bombing past us towards The
Harebreaks. The event was rounded off nicely with an early breakfast at
St Marks', courtesy of Keith.
January 2007 - We undertook some
more tree planting (27th Jan) on the fringes of the wood and to reclaim
areas that are becoming sparse or turning to grassland
November & December 2006 -
We undertook a litter pick (4th Nov) and some tree planting (2nd Dec).
The next organised clean up is on Saturday, 27th Jan, 1.30pm. We meet
at the Bill Everett Centre car park. If you can spare some time, please
come along. Ian Mather, Watford Borough Council, will kindly arrange
tools and equipment.