Sunday, 24 August 2014

Avon Heath Country Park


My family and I recently took a detour en route to our holiday to visit my folks in Dorset and we decided to meet up at Avon Country park.


I'd wanted to visit it for a while but despite looking worth it on the web I wasn't sure if it would deliver. It did. It's in two distinct sections which are linked via a path around some MOD land with the upper part being more laid out and signposted than the slightly more natural lower part.

We started with a look around the upper part and saw a fantastic collection of flora and fauna with a flock of mistel thrushes and a dartford warbler being the highlight of the first look around.


Despite that fact that there was a lot of heathland, well I say a lot, it has declined rapidly from it's heyday, there was still a lot of trees which mainly comprised of scots pine and silver birch with the occasional oak, holly and field maple. There is a controlled uprooting of small pine saplings to control them and maintain the heathland. 

An afternoon sortie took in the lower part and it's fairly similar (in broad terms) and is were nightjar sightings can be seen and indeed we heard some distant churring. The pictures above ar of the purbeck hills in the distance and the gorse which was about ten feet tall. 

After a bite we decided to ask in the visitor centre if the sundews were close at hand as we fancied seeing them before departing and luckily they are. if you ever visit follow the the orange/ red route anticlockwise and they are on the junction of the path as you turn for the visitor centre. Blink and you miss them as they bare easily overlooked and I think that common and oblong leaved sundews sat side by side but we didn't have time to check.

And so we left. It was a family day and time pressures forced us to leave but if you have the time to slow it down, do a sit spot etc you will hopefully be rewarded. We found and saw the above with six of us walking around. Recommended.



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