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Trees, plants and wildlife in Spud Wood

The planting consists of native broadleaf species including oak (45%), ash (25%), silver birch (12%) and a shrub layer of rowan, hazel, hawthorn, blackthorn, dogwood, guelder rose, field maple and holly.

 Around a third of the site was seeded with a native grasses to create meadows and a network of grass footpaths for public access.

Wild garlic (Photo: Christine Martin/WTML)

In the woodland, there are patches of bluebell, forget-me-not and wild garlic in spring, and common grassland wildflowers, such as oxeye daisy, can be seen in the meadows.

The Bridgewater Canal runs along the northern boundary of the site, and it is bordered to the south by Helsdale Wood, a semi-natural ancient woodland designated Site of Biological Importance (SBI) due to its population of mosses and liverworts. The newer Spud Wood acts as a buffer to this rare habitat and it’s hoped that many of the species found in Helsdale Wood will spread into Spud Wood. Helsdale Brook runs from Helsdale Wood into Spud Wood and there is a small pond/wetland area in the south-eastern corner of the site.

Wildlife

Spud Wood supports a variety of wildlife, including squirrel, rabbit, and field vole, and foxes move across the site. The woodland is home to a number of bird species, including the great spotted woodpecker, nuthatch, tree sparrow, buzzard, hobby, skylark and fieldfare, as well as kingfisher in the canal area.