Macclesfield Wildlife Explorers RSPB Phoenix

Macclesfield RSPB Wildlife Explorers celebrate
MWH MERSEY BASIN WEEK with a Seed Gathering event
at   Poynton Coppice
on Saturday 4 October 2008


The weather forecast for our seed gathering event was dreadful, but that didn't stop lots of intrepid Wildlife Explorers turning up to help us gather seeds at Poynton Coppice. It was certainly worth it! Despite a little drizzle at the start of the meeting it stayed bright and dry.

Macclesfield Borough Council Ranger Ed Pilkington lead our nature ramble and explained how the coppice is managed and maintained. The trees and hedgerows were full of autumn colour. As well as the scarlet, purple and brown of the seeds, fruits and berries we also looked for the colours of the changing autumn leaves and found lots of beautiful golds, oranges and reds.

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The group collected lots of seeds from native tree species including oak, ash, hawthorn, and birch. We found lots of examples like the winged seeds of the ash tree and the fantastic hooked seeds of wood avens that snag onto the fur of passing animals.


Ed showed us how tiny birch seeds are dispersed by the wind. This explains why birch is so widespread along the Middlewood Way as the seeds were once carried along as the trains rushed by.

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Wildlife Explorers had lots of fun playing games to learn about the different strategies plants use for seed dispersal.

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We will sort and plant the seeds we collected at a future RSPB Wildlife Explorers meeting, ensuring that lots of seedlings have the very best start.

We received a grant as part of MWH Mersey Basin Week. The grant funded pairs of gloves, safety equipment and some brilliant identification books and ID charts to help Wildlife Explorers in their quest to collect seeds.

Fantastic Fair Trade collecting bags for this event were very kindly donated by the Co-operative supermarket on Hurdsfield Road in Macclesfield.