Haw-some! Biggest berry crop since records began

Haw-some! Biggest berry crop since records began

Hawthorn crop

Nature’s Calendar has recorded the biggest crop of Hawthorn berries since records began. Hedgerows and woodlands across Dorset are awash with haws, attracting a constant stream of birds who are feasting on this year’s bumper crop.
Nature’s Calendar recorders have given this year’s crop a 4.2 on the fruit scale, a score deemed as ‘exceptional’ and equalled only in 2014 when the early and rapid spring followed a mild and wet winter.
Dr Judith Garforth, the Woodland Trust’s Citizen Science Officer, said: “This is really good autumn news for wildlife. Haws are eaten by migrating birds such as redwings, fieldfares and thrushes as well as small mammals.
“The fruit score is really important as it provides an indicator of winter food availability for wildlife, as well as the seed source available for natural regeneration of trees and shrubs.”
Nature’s Calendar volunteers record the date hawthorn flowers open in spring – the average date of the hawthorn’s first flowering this year was May 1. This was perfect timing for its common name the ‘May tree’ while the warm dry weather in May was ideal for pollinating insects.
n Nature’s Calendar needs volunteers to record.
For more information visit naturescalendar. woodlandtrust.org.uk

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