When her school gave her a spare afternoon a week for work experience, 17-year-old Katie Hillier headed straight to the forest…
‘On Wednesday afternoons, my school allows us to do work experience. I’m interested in biology and conservation and I wanted to do something a bit different.
Amazingly, last year the chances of spotting a kestrel, or even an owl, were higher than ever before on both the Dorsington and Spernal estates in the Heart of England Forest.
After a mild winter, and with a thriving vole population to keep hungry chicks happy, mid-year reports came in of early laying tawny and barn owls.
‘Spring and summer are really exciting seasons in the forest. Once the winter planting comes to an end, new life shoots up everywhere. Then, as the days get longer and warmer, the forest is full of colour and noise and the air is thick with floral aromas. ‘In late June, the small-leaved lime flowers appear in their sweet-smelling clusters.