Eyes peeled for a wealth of birdlife

Hazel Bowes, the Ludlow SWT chair has written and interesting piece, reproduced here , about the birdlife you can expect to see on Whitcliffe.

Although Whitcliffe Common is only 52acres
and is adjacent to the popular town of Ludlow the area is
well managed by ‘The Friends of Whitcliffe Common’ resulting
in a suprising richness of  birdlife.

From Ludford bridge it is possible to
spot Grey Wagtails, Grey Heron, mute Swans and Commen
Sandpiper and Dipper on the little islands. In summer,
paticularly evenings screaming flocks of Swifts never cease
to delight. If you now make your way past the Charlton Arms
and turn immeadiately right up the steps you will walk
through trees with clearings. Here you may find Song and
Mistle Thrush, all the pigeons including Stock Dove, Greater
Spotted Woodpecker and Tawny Owl which will be brought to
your attention by the angry noise of smaller birds ganging
up against it! Further along the path you come to the open
common with wonderful viws over the town with its castle,
church and hills beyond. You may be lucky to see a Red Kite
overhead or Ravens and Buzzards. There are a pair of
Peregrine Falcons often on the church tower looking for easy
pickings from the feral pigeons!(binoculars essential). Now
walk uphill to the toposcope and bearing left carefully
crossthe road. You now enter an area of predominantly old
oak trees. In spring you may be lucky to spot or hear Commen
Redstart, Pied Flycatcher, Nuthatch, Treecreeper and the
rarer Willow Warbler and Spotted Flycatcher.
Circle round to retrace your steps back
to the topograph and head downhill  to the left. Watch
for Long-tailed Tits, willow and Marsh Tits , Blue , Great
and Cole Tits, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Chaffinch and God
crest where you come across conifers. In season Chiff chaff
and Blackcap and Commen Whitethroat with an occasional
sighting of the Sparrowhawk. Descend by the steps that lead
to Dinham Bridge. At the bottem on your left are Hornbeams,
look for Hawfinches in winter and in the quarry behind
Lesser Spotted Woodpecker. Make your way back to Ludford
Bridge along the Breadwalk which runs beside the river. You
may see passing Cormorants, Kingfisher, Sand Martin,
Goosander, Little Grebe,Mallards and Moorhens