02 March 2015 a post by Dan Papworth. 0 comments.

Blackbird - the way of the artist

He’s bolder than his ancestors were, I am confident of that. Do any digging in your garden or allotment and you are just as likely to see him as that other opportunist, the Robin. He works hard too, systematically working his way through the autumn leaves in search of insects, worms, caterpillars and grubs. We have named his kind after the male, whose black plumage is accentuated by a bright orange/yellow beak and ring encircling each eye. He hops and flits and his song reminds us of the woods that once blanketed these lands. More ...

01 March 2015 a post by Dan Papworth. 0 comments.

Water Vole - focussing on what is essential

It was only whilst researching this blog that I discovered that we have three different species of Vole : Water Vole, Field Vole and Bank Vole. The first of these will be my focus, and is, in fact, the most rare. This poor lass is the one most commonly mistaken for a Rat (somewhat unhelpfully Kenneth Grahame’s “Ratty” in The Wind in the Willows is actually a Water Vole) because both species tend to live near water courses. An employee of Severn Trent Water told me that Rats do not actually like getting wet, however, so if you see a swimming Rat you are almost certainly looking at a Vole. More ...

28 February 2015 a post by Dan Papworth. 1 comments.

Common Frog - rediscovering familiar paths

Leaping suddenly from cover when you least expect him, he can still be hard to spot even when you know he is there. His skin colour varies hugely: green, brown, yellow, orange, black, red or cream. During the mating season he may have a bluish throat, whilst his mate could have a pinkish blush to her skin. His natural camouflage is enhanced by seemingly random dark patches and dark bars on his legs. He needs it, being the prey of foxes, birds of prey, snakes, large predatory fish and domestic cats. More ...

27 February 2015 a post by Dan Papworth. 1 comments.

Peregrine - life in all its fulness

“I saw a crow, quite a large bird, seemingly on its way from one place to another in not much of a hurry, when suddenly it realised this small, dark spot on the edge of vision was getting larger, shooting towards it at a terrifying speed. With a terrified squawk, it hurled itself into the nearest tree, crashing into the foliage without any thought except getting away. It was absolutely gripping”. More ...

26 February 2015 a post by Dan Papworth. 0 comments.

Magpie - peace and trust in the face of uncertainty

She is, of course, another crow (Corvid) and her emergence makes me wonder. Why is this family of birds coming to prominence as I write? They fly darkly into the imagination, enigmatic and self-contained. More ...

25 February 2015 a post by Dan Papworth. 0 comments.

Brown Trout - celebrating diversity

Hers is the only Trout species native to Britain but they make up for it by being incredibly diverse. Their cells have between thirty eight and forty two pairs of chromosomes (compared to humans usual twenty three). There are freshwater and coastal varieties (the latter are referred to as “sea trout”) and as much difference between individuals as we might find in any group of people. More ...

24 February 2015 a post by Dan Papworth. 0 comments.

Rook - prophecy, protection and the sharing of wisdom

Rooks and humans have something of a special relationship because when these islands were thickly wooded we were the ones who rapidly increased the number and size of clearings. More ...

23 February 2015 a post by Dan Papworth. 3 comments.

St George’s Mushroom - the life within

Foraging has no specific season . There are always things to collect whatever the time of year, but the coming of Spring brings a clear change in what you gather. Cranberries give way to Elderflowers, Cowberries to Sorrel, and Guelder Rose to Dandelion and Stinging Nettles (yes, we all called them “weeds” once!) Arguably the “Holy Grail” of foraging for wild food is mushrooms. More ...

22 February 2015 a post by Dan Papworth. 0 comments.

Raven - the incredible reach of God

It can be tempting when you see a large crow to think he is a Raven, but you have to think bigger than you realise. With a wingspan of around 1.2m (4 feet in old money ) he is the largest perching bird in Europe, bigger than a Buzzard. He is highly intelligent (as humans rate this) and his life expectancy is comparable to most of ours. More common across Scotland than in the rest of the UK, he favours high ground, often in quite desolate locations, although elsewhere in the world he is more of a forest creature. This may say something about our lack of forests, not to mention his adaptability. More ...

21 February 2015 a post by Dan Papworth. 0 comments.

Badger - digging deeper

In common with most of our native mammals, the Badger is a shy creature and therefore hard to observe. He is very orderly, keeping setts fastidiously clean, and regularly replacing old bedding (bluebells are a favourite material). His staple diet is earthworms but he is an opportunistic omnivore, enabling him to thrive even when for various reasons worms are in short supply. More ...

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Forest Church Tweets

TheVibeLive:
Community Meal/Forest Church tomorrow at 12:30 PM - More Info: sqb.co/00000rgL
21 Feb

shollinghurst:
over on the Mystic Christ and Forest Church blog there is an intriguing and different way to do daily Lenten... fb.me/71vI5n4qX
19 Feb

Stubiedooh:
Forest Church Dyffryn Clwyd meets this Saturday at Alyn Waters near Wrexham 2pm start. First Shoots: Nurturing... fb.me/3UiF4zTOw
16 Feb