Category Archives: Grounds – Flora and fauna

Meadow wildflowers to huge historic trees are featured in this category, along with posts about the wide range of wildlife that lives and forages in the gardens and landscape at Compton Verney

Bird Watch Update

Our bird recording expert has been out exploring with notepad and pencil again, updating the list in respect of the birds who visit or reside at Compton Verney.

Whilst spotting, recording and snapping appears to be a simple process, I can testify personally to many failed attempts at capturing bird images, that’s why I share so many pictures of flowers and bees – they generally do stay in one place long enough for me to focus!

Alwyn has been recording at Compton Verney and nearby for many years now, and his knowledge of the preferred hunting ground for any given species, coupled with quick recognition of a bird in flight, and of course their bird song, means he is often in the right place at the right time. Even with this advantage however, it is still difficult to capture good images whilst out roving and recording. He manages to do it however, frequently, and I’m glad to share a few more example here. Enjoy!

More grounds images can be seen via the link to C V Grounds tag board – #CVGrounds


Blue tit clinging to a tree in the Ice House Coppice, a woodland garden area at Compton Verney. © Compton Verney/Alwyn Knapton 2015

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Creating a Wild Flower Meadow

We have been extra busy bees at Compton Verney this last year, enriching a large area usually referred to as the west lawn. A large part of the lawn has been managed for wild flowers for a handful of years now, and although there were flushes of brilliance, the cowslips in particular giving a good show; the lawn was some way from becoming a wild flower meadow feature.

In 2014 however,an opportunity presented itself during planning for the 2015 summer exhibition titled ‘The Arts and Crafts House: Then and Now’That opportunity Continue reading

Park Life! Moths: Butterflies of the Night

Have you signed up for the 30 Days Wild challenge from the Wildlife Trusts? If so then you might like to hear of an evening wildlife event at Compton Verney that would certainly qualify as a random act of wildness!

As part of the Park Life! season at Compton Verney, we’re hosting a new evening event next week:

Moths: Butterflies of the Night

9 June 2015   7.30pm

A new nature-watch event.  Arthur Owens gives a short talk and leads a night walk to discover the beautiful world of these fascinating insects. Please wear appropriate outdoor clothing.

Advance booking required, call 01926 645 500 for tickets. or look to Website for more information.

£10, Concs £7.50, Members £7.50.


30 Days Wild

Interested in Wildlife but never have time to do anything about it?

P1020681     Great Crested Grebe 9.9.14 Alwyn Knapton     DSCF2798     Tawny June 14 Gary Webb

Well there’s a challenge from the Wildlife Trusts that make it easier than ever before to engage with wildlife this June – 30 Days Wild.

As the Wildlife Trust says:

“Make room for nature this June – no matter where you are or how busy your life! Make this the month when you do something wild every day – and let us motivate you! When you sign up to our challenge, we’ll send you a pack full of encouragement, ideas and Random Acts of Wildness. You’ll also receive a funky wallchart to track your progress, a wild badge, and regular blasts of inspiration throughout June straight to your inbox to help you
make nature part of your life

I have signed up as an individual, printed my calendar and have started at Compton Verney today with my first random act of wildness – a ten minute walk amongst meadow flowers with my camera. For the rest of June I’ll continue with my daily acts of wildness and will tweet my progress using the hashtag #30DaysWild – and of course #CVGrounds if my random act of wildness is at Compton Verney.

If you’re interested in signing up to the challenge there’s a host of opportunity for random acts of wildness both locally and if you visit the landscape at Compton Verney – hug a veteran tree, listen to the birdsong in the coppice, create natural art at Nature’s Art Box or study lichen on the ornamental bridge. Go on, follow the link and give it a try… 30 Days Wild 

Gary Webb, Head of Landscape & Gardens at Compton Verney.

30DAYSWILD_ID2 teal The Wildlife Trusts  logo(1)

Bird Ringing, BBQ & Breakfast…

A quick post today after receipt of some images from Alwyn, our resident bird spotter.

As part of an outreach project we recently welcomed a group of youngsters to site who were immersed in Compton Verney life for a twenty-four hour period – amongst other things this included a camping experience and bird ringing exercise led by Dr Andrew Gosler, university research lecturer in ornithology and conservation at Oxford University. Continue reading

Honey Bee News – Compton Verney

We’ve had a few questions about the honey bees at Compton Verney lately, particularly about their condition post winter. Rod has kindly put a few words together as an update, although at this extra busy time of year I’m over a week late posting this to the blog… Please keep this in mind when reading!


Bees active at Compton Verney. © Compton Verney 2015

Spring Update – by Rod Oates

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