Popular beauty spot with riverside and woodland birds
BOLTON ABBEY ESTATE opened the footpath in the Strid Woods in 1810, thanks to 6th Duke of Devonshire and the Rev. William Carr inviting the public to walk the paths they created by the river. This access has been continuous to this day, but there is a large payment for the car park on the estate with free parking areas often blocked off with large rocks! This area is a Site of Special Scientific Interest with its wonderful woodland and riverside birds. My walk starts at a small car park in the hamlet of Stroriths. On a good day you should find raptors circling over the woods, especially Buzzards. At least two pairs of Red Kites used to nest here but are now gone. Honey Buzzard is one of those birds you dream of finding and they have been seen in the area. Green Woodpeckers are common as you walk along to the river, with several Redstarts nesting in the old ‘park’ trees in spring and summer. The river has plenty of Goosanders, plus a great population of Mandarins. Look for the regular Dippers and Grey Wagtails and Common Sandpiper in summer. The woods are a favourite for Yorkshire bird clubs looking for the ‘big three’ in spring, with Pied Flycatcher, Redstart and Wood Warbler present. Blackcaps, Garden Warbler, Chiffchaff and Willow Warbler are possible in spring and summer, along with Treecreeper and Nuthatch year-round. Lesser Spotted Woodpecker is now a rarity in the area, despite great woodland.