Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Self set trees at Brockley Grove

The plantation was created around 1990, twenty years later Rangers organised work parties to begin coppice management -

Part of the management is to assess the condition of the developing woodland by monitoring self set trees. These were recorded in October 2015
  • Field Maple
  • Cherry sp
  • Holly
  • Oak
  • Ash
  • Willow sp
  • Willow sp
  • Broom
  • Norway Maple
  • Sycamore
  • Hawthorn
  • Hazel

Brockley Grove - then and now

Holders Woods and Fields east of centre with Brockley Grove to the south, road and turning circle
Article from Birmingham Forum website - 
My old mum and I moved into a prefab on Brockley grove just off dog pool lane (dads lane) in moseley in about 1959 and my old mum thought it was heaven, it had a "fitted kitchen" i.e a built in washing machine, she'd always had to do her washing by hand before and in both bedrooms were "metal" fitted wardrobes. As it was detached, standing surounded with a nice little garden we both loved it. unfortunatly it' now been demolished and  Brockley grove is now unsign posted and is a dog walking area but I will always have very fond memories of mom's little "bungalow".

This map shows the layout of the Brockley Grove prefabs

Monday, 23 November 2015


Please send your wildlife sightings to EcoRecord


EcoRecord is the biological record centre for Birmingham and the Black Country (Dudley, Sandwell, Walsall & Wolverhampton).

EcoRecord collects, collates and makes available information about the wildlife, wildlife sites and habitats of Birmingham and the Black Country and currently has over 500,000 species records on its database.

These records come from many sources, ranging from professional ecologists to amateur expert naturalists to other wildlife enthusiasts

The Wren
Coppiced woodland provides good nesting opportunities for Wrens, although the bird has a wide range of habitats.

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Holders Woods Fungi

Black Elfin Saddle at Holders Woods - photo by Terry Quinn

Trooping Funnel Fungus at Holders Woods- photo by Terry Quinn
Holders Woodland November 2015

Friday, 6 November 2015

From plantation to woodland

When does a plantation become a woodland? It's not an overnight occurrence but a gradual process and mostly overlooked.

Brockley Grove Plantation at Moor Green, like many other plantations created in the 1980's and 90's, is showing signs of woodland; beyond the presence of trees are subtle hidden changes, taking place year on year as decay and decomposition set in, aided by dead wood, fungi, invertebrates and other micro organisms, vital elements for the increasing biodiversity.

Orange Ladybird at Brockley Grove Plantation (Photo by Connor)

The accelerated process begins with the planting of trees, but in a natural state pioneer species would colonise with the aid of seeds dispersed from local specimens - Windblown Birch and Ash, bird dropped seeds from Hawthorn, Jay planted acorns from Oak and fallen nuts from Hazel.

This week we witnessed the presence of an Orange Ladybird,

Halyzia 16-guttata

the Uk Ladybird survey informs us -

Size: 4.5 - 6mm 
Basic colour: orange 
Pattern colour: white spots 
Number of spots: 12-16 
Spot fusions: none 
Melanic (black) form: no 

Pronotum: orange 
Leg colour: orange 
Habitat: deciduous trees 
Host plant: deciduous trees, particularly sycamore and ash 
Overwintering: leaf litter or in sheltered positions on trees 
Food: mildews 

Other notes: Considered an indicator of ancient woodland until 1987. Has become widespread since it became common on sycamore trees. Recently has also moved onto ash trees and appears to be increasing in abundance. It is attracted to light and is often found in moth-traps. Rarely breeds before mid-June. 


Mature Sycamore is indeed present at Brockley Plantation but casts a heavy shade over the coppiced  Hazel stools, so a decision may be required if one species seems to be dominating, for now it's an awareness and monitoring exercise and we'll check on the regrowth of the Hazel stools next Autumn.

Woodland Wednesday Workers at Brockley Grove Plantation (Thanks to Terry Quinn for photos)
Roy pays attention to billhook

Thanks to Terry Quinn for photos