BLOG 3 - Bromsgrove School Wildlife
The School is situated in the heart of Bromsgrove and it is an oasis for wildlife. It’s hard to imagine that we are only five minutes walk away from the town centre and surrounded by busy roads and houses.
We have a wide range of British mammals such as Foxes, Squirrels (but not the red variety) Rabbits and occasional visits from Badgers. The wide range of birds that we see is really our best claim to fame.
Not many people know that there are six ponds around the Senior School and one at Prep School, all but one of these ponds is shallow and encourages pond life such as Frogs, Toads and Newts.
The pond behind the library has over three hundred fish in it. There are Koi Carp, Ghost Carp and various varieties of Gold Fish. They have to be fed every day and the pond has to be kept clear of any debris such as leaves and branches to ensure a safe living environment for the fish.
Around the pond area is a birdwatchers dream - over the last few years we have seen many British birds such as Kingfishers, Mallards, Herons, Wagtails and even recently a Moorhen, of which I have no idea how it got there or where it came from. We often see Goldcrest Nuthatch and many other types of Finches, along with various Tits, Hedge Sparrows and other smaller birds and various members of the crow family.
We have invested in bird boxes and feeding stations around the School. In 2011 we had a pair of Sparrow Hawks nest and watched as two young were reared by their mother - this was a very special time for the birdwatchers of the School.
The gardening team often come in to School early in the morning to see what the local Sparrow Hawks have had to eat the previous evening! The School also has resident Buzzards which can sometimes be seen sitting on the rugby posts or hovering above the fields and local Gulls which appear on our sports fields after heavy rain eating the worms.
Our team of five very keen gardeners ensure that wildlife is encouraged around School. There is a saying in wildlife circles that mess is best, allowing any branches to rot thus encouraging insects to live on the rotting wood. Insects are at the bottom of the food chain, which birds and mammals will feed off.
The School is heavily involved with the local council in trying to encourage water voles into the town’s streams with some success. Thankfully the local moles are leaving us alone for the time being to the relief of our grounds staff!
I am more than happy to discuss the wildlife around the School with anyone who is interested – I look forward to speaking to you.
I hope this small report on the School’s wildlife has given you an idea about what we see around our great school and it grounds.