NATURE lovers are being invited to set their alarm clock for an early start to enjoy the dawn chorus in two South Yorkshire woods.
The Forestry Commission is staging dawnwalks through Kiveton Wood on Saturday and again at Dinnington Wood on May 15.
Both beauty spots are being nurtured on former colliery sites and according to recent surveys birds are flocking to the new haunts.
More than 50 species have been recorded at Kiveton including skylark, kingfisher and kestrel. At Dinnington, 53 species were spotted last year, with a high number of waders like little ringed plover and lapwings taking advantage of wetland features.
Every dawn chorus is unique and although birds can sing through the night, the crescendo is reached a few hours after dawn with chiffchaffs and woodpeckers adding their distinctive contributions.
Ranger Dougie MacTaggart said: “Both woodlands bristle with wildlife at the crack of dawn. Birds are at their most vocal this time of the year, marking territories and attracting mates. But to see and hear the action, you’ve got to make an early start! The rewards are unforgettable and the perfect antidote to the stresses of modern life.”
There’ll be plenty of other activity to look out for as sun worshippers stir for action and nocturnal animals make their way home.
Dinnington and Kiveton Community Woods are owned by the Land Restoration Trust and managed by the Forestry Commission.
The Kiveton walk meets at the Colliery Road entrance to the woodland. The Dinnington trek starts from the Church Lane entrance. Booking is required for both on 01302 820278. Wear suitable clothing and footwear and bring binoculars. Both start at 5.30am.