WIGWIG

Wen­lock Edge comes to an end here, but not the birds

Bird Watching (UK) - - Go Birding - BERNARD JONES

THIS IS AN in­ter­est­ing walk along the last few miles of Wen­lock Edge, which runs from Craven Arms to the River Sev­ern at Iron­bridge. River, wood­land and open ar­eas pro­vide a range of bird­ing pos­si­bil­i­ties. Rab­bit War­ren Plan­ta­tion has sev­eral tracks, so you can wan­der around check­ing for wood­land birds, par­tic­u­larly Great Spot­ted Wood­pecker, Nuthatch and Treecreeper. And where does the un­usual name Wigwig come from? Well, orig­i­nally it was “Wigewic” in the Domes­day Book, from an Old English per­sonal name “Wyga” and “wic” mean­ing set­tle­ment, and over the years it has changed to its cur­rent for­mat. The road here is very nar­row so it might be best to park at Homer, where there is a small layby near the phone box. There’s a way­marked sign to fol­low north, then northwest, to­wards the Shein­ton Brook, where you have a good chance of see­ing a colour­ful King­fisher. Carry on into wood­land, which has sev­eral dif­fer­ent lo­cal names in­clud­ing Ban­nis­ter’s Cop­pice, Rab­bit War­ren Plan­ta­tion and The Springs. It is all de­cid­u­ous wood­land with the usual wood­peck­ers, Nuthatch and Treecreeper – and some Tawny Owls. Spring morn­ings are full of bird­song, es­pe­cially Gar­den and Wood War­blers, Black­cap and Chaffinch. Birds of preys such as Spar­rowhawk and Buz­zard are around, and Red Kite, now seen more of­ten in parts of Shrop­shire, is pos­si­ble, so keep a look out for one.

Lit­tle Owl

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