Waterlogged fields along Underlyn Lane are ideal for wading birds like lapwing, snipe and woodcock. An old local name for one of them in fact was ‘Plover Field’. These birds, along with skylarks, still nest here in the long vegetation. It could be among a food crop such as peas, or grass that will be cut for hay.

Many other species also nest around the boundary. Yellowhammers prefer short, compact hedges, reed buntings use reedy ditches, and summer warblers such as chiffchaffs and blackcaps use the hedgerow trees and scrub as high points from which to sing. Many nest on, or close to, the ground in the long vegetation at the bottom of the hedge, using the wide field margin to forage food for their young. These fields and boundary hedges are especially managed to help them

You may be lucky enough to spot a raven or a kestrel. Along with crows and magpies, they will be looking for eggs and nestlings on the ground. If a ground-nesting bird is disturbed and leaves its nest, these predators will spot it leaving and raid the nest.

To protect them, therefore, please
STAY ON THE FOOTPATH AND KEEP DOGS ON A LEAD

To have the best chance of seeing some of these birds, stand quietly for a few minutes on the edge of the field close to this notice. In the autumn there is a good chance of seeing whinchats stopping off on migration to fatten up on berries, and in the winter the waders are joined by fieldfares and redwings, and the much smaller jack snipe.