If you would like to read my Dorset nature notes about any of these featured species or sites please click on the post title

About Me

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I have been interested in nature for most of my life but since I retired I spend as much time as I can exploring the nature reserves and wildlife hotspots of my adopted home, Dorset in southern England. Whilst out I record what I see and take snaps where I can (I am no photographer!) and that forms the basis of my Nature of Dorset website. When I find something new I like to research it and write about it in my nature notes, it is how I learn and hopefully you might find my notes helpful as well!

This website is for the people of Dorset interested in wildlife and for people from elsewhere interested in the wildlife of Dorset!

17 December, 2013

The curious case of the witches brooms ...

Witches brooms on silver birch
When out walking the other afternoon I encountered a few silver birch trees in a line with these peculiar twig clusters. Against the weak winter's afternoon sky they looked quite sinister and it was easy to see why our country ancestors called these witches brooms! Whether it was genuinely believed this was the work of witches I do not know but, as always it seems, science has come along and put paid to long standing myths.

13 December, 2013

Buzzards stand out in a crowd

Buzzards can often be seen on the ground
We are used to seeing buzzards (Buteo buteo) soaring in the sky on sunny days or perhaps sitting on a telegraph pole or fence post but a report of between seven and twelve regularly standing in a field near Dorchester (just west of Compton Valance) reminded me that about four years ago there were fifteen on the ground in a field near Puddletown. Is this unusual or bizarre behavior? I made enquiries and it seems not.