Out twice today, both for about an hour and both in Eaves wood.
In the first instance, headed up to the Pepperpot. The views weren’t as good as they can be, but it was just nice to be out.
Having not seen the Roe deer yesterday, I wanted to maximise my chances today, and there is a clearing in Eaves wood where they can often be seen. Sure enough as I came out of the trees I saw two white rumps bouncing away. At first I lost them, but then I saw that they had stopped away to my left. As I watched them, two more deer emerged from the trees ahead. They ran across to join the others, watched me for a while, and then the four of them turned and trotted away. I’ve often seen Roe deer in pairs or threes, but I don’t think that I’ve often seen four together.
Eaves wood is a mixed wood with oak, hazel, birch, yew, scot’s pine etc, but the trees that stood out for me today were the beeches. When the trees are all bare, the smooth grey bark of the Beech becomes very prominent.
When I first moved to the area, this tree was huge. And unlike most of the beeches in the wood, which are tall and slender, it was broad, with many large wide-spread branches. Even then it had a bracket fungus growing on it. Subsequently, it was felled, but the timber has been left in situ, and it’s all now growing these huge bracket fungus.
This is part of the Ring o’ Beeches, which is, as it sounds, a perfect ring of mature beech trees. It’s a special spot for me, because I almost proposed to the lady who is now my wife here. I had been waiting for the right moment and this felt sufficiently romantic, but then Angela, who was wearing sandals, noticed that the wood ants were walking across her feet, reacted badly, and the moment was gone.