Yesterday evening was the last walk in this series of showing people the beauty and uniqueness of RSPB Northward Hill. There is something special about an evening walk at this time of year, the light of the setting sun across the marsh to the west is pretty stunning, giving the vista a rich golden bath. It goes without saying the freshly emerging foliage on ancient trees such as the mighty oak in that light is absolutely magic.

As to the nightingales, as I have said before the walks run from about the second/third week in April to the third/fourth week in May. The first and last are the two that give me most concern as singing males aren't always guaranteed.

Last night was no exception and even though we were in prime territories I was struggling to get a full song. Fortunately as is often the case as we walked down from the hill one stated up giving everyone a chance to hear the magnificently melodious song of a Nightingale in full flow. I watched the peoples faces as they smiled and nodded in awe of the beautiful sound emanating from a nearby bramble.

Cettis' Warbler burst out its' explosive song as we made our way back up to Sweeney Viewpoint.

I was happy as I'd fulfilled my role as a guide, the twenty-four guests were happy as they'd got to hear the bird in full song. Of course, I explain to people about Medway Council in conjunction with Homes Englands' plan to put housing on Lodge Hill with its' Nationally important Nightingale population. These walks I hope will galvanize and strengthen the opposition to this outrageous and blatantly disgraceful project on SSSI protected land.

Over the course of a month and a half, one hundred and five people have attended our walks at Northward Hill and Cliffe Pools. This is not bad considering last week only two brave souls turned up due to the rain

On a personal level, now I don't want to hear them any more, as when they fall silent it's an indication territories are established and pairing complete.

Thanks to Des and Carol for their help over the last few weeks.

Anonymous