Odiham Biodiversity Group - Newsletter February 2007

by otmg on Wednesday 21st March

‘Reviving Your Landscape’

Thursday 29th March at the Cross Barn

North East Hampshire is a very special area for biodiversity. The landscape is of great historical importance but much, especially the heathland has been neglected. Hampshire Wildlife Trust has set up The Grazing for Biodiversity Project as a new initiative to re-introduce grazing animals onto some of the most important areas and over time this traditional form of management will improve the area for wildlife.

Alex Cruickshank, the project manager is coming to talk to us about this project on the 29th March. The illustrated talk will start at 7.45 pm. All are welcome. Admission £2, children free.

Bird Walks

Some 20 of us braved the mud on the 10th February and we were rewarded with sightings of 28 different species of birds, including several Redwings. Admittedly, without Peter’s expertise we wouldn’t have seen half that number but we all learnt a great deal. One of the highlights wasn’t a bird at all – we had a very close sighting of four Roe Deer – 3 does and a buck.

Peter has kindly agreed to repeat the exercise on Saturday the 31st March and hopefully we will see some of the early migrants such as Chiffchaff. This time we will probably have a wander around the Deer Park or the southern end of Odiham Common. Please meet at the Colt Hill car park at 2.00 pm. £1, children free.


It has been suggested that we undertake wildlife surveys of the Cemetery and the Parish Council have encouraged us to do this. Being on the edge of the village and encircled by hedges should be wonderful for wildlife and I have seen deer there. We hope to start surveying in the next couple of weeks after obtaining advice from the Hampshire Wildlife Trust. If anyone is interested in helping with this project please get in touch.

Odiham Biodiversity Group AGM 3rd April

We will be holding our first AGM on the evening of Tuesday 3rd of April. All of you who receive a newsletter are ‘members’ and will be entitled to attend and vote at the AGM. At the meeting we will be electing a Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer. If you are interested in becoming more involved with the group please come along to the next Steering Group meeting at 7.30 pm on Tuesday 6th March at Parkside. If you would like to attend the AGM please indicate on the atttached form so that we can arrange an appropriate venue.

Swan Line

In addition to the RSPCA (0870 5555999) and Hart Wildlife Rescue (01256 770438), Steve Lyons has drawn our attention to Swan Line a rescue service specifically for swans, as you might have guessed. Their number is 01753 859397.

Other Organisations’ Events

The Odiham Society is having a talk entitled ‘Hampshire – a Romantic Landscape’ on Friday 23rd March at 7.30pm. The speaker is George Watts and the venue – The Cross Barn. All are welcome.

Peter Hutchins who led our Winter Bird Walk runs the Basingstoke Local Members Group of the RSPB. On the 21st March they are having a talk on ‘Spring in the Cevennes and Vercors’ and on the 25th March they will be visiting the Blashford Lakes HWT Reserve. For more details please contact Peter on 01256 770831 or [email protected]

Steve Lyons will be doing his usual guided walks on Odiham Common this Spring starting with ‘A walk in the woods’ in May.

Hart District Council Rangers also guide walks at other sites in the District such as Hazeley Heath, Elvetham Heath and Fleet Pond. The first walk is at Hazeley Heath at 10.00 am on Saturday 31st March. Please book in advance on 01252 843893. For more information about other Hart District walks please call 01252 623443 or e-mail [email protected]

Diary of Local Events

6th March Steering group meeting. 7.30 pm at Parkside
21st March RSPB Talk Basingstoke
23rd March Odiham Society talk ‘Hampshire – a Romantic Landscape’
25th March HWT Volunteers. Rachel Remnant 01489 774421 or Tim Ransom 01256 764541
29th March ‘Reviving Your Landscape’ OBG talk at the Cross Barn 7.45 pm. £2
31st March Hart District Ranger walk at Hazeley Heath
31st March Spring Bird Walk, Colt Hill Wharf car park. 2.00 pm £1
3rd April OBG Steering Group meeting and AGM

For more informationplease contact Sheila Bates 01256 701187 or [email protected]