Cammo is a Local Nature Reserve. This gives it an extra bit of protection against it ever being built on and is an indication of its value for wildlife.
There are two main habitats in the park – the woodland and the fields.
The woodland is great for wildlife mostly because of the combination
of big old trees and natural regeneration. This means that there is
lots of variety of ages of trees and plenty of dead wood. Birds include
nesting buzzards and tawny owls. There are also sparrowhawks,
jackdaws and jays plus nuthatches, thrushes, robins, blue, great and
coal tits and great spotted woodpeckers. The trees include oak,
sycamore, ash, willow, yew, holly, aspen, poplar, beech, cherry
and lime. The woodland is also home to bats, foxes, badgers
and roe deer.
Great Spotted Woodpecker
The fields were originally fairly poor as habitat because there was very little floral diversity as the fields were dominated by vigorous grasses put in for the cattle when Cammo was a working farm. Now there are more than 72 species of flowering plants, mostly in the wildflower meadows put in by The Friends. As a result the flowers now support thousands of bumble bees as well as honey bees from hives all around Cammo. The fields also have big old trees in them – mostly oak but also some sycamore, lime and sweet chestnut. These are really important as they are beginning to die back and provide lots of nesting holes for the woodpeckers and jackdaws. The fields now also have hedgerows all round them and these provide nesting and feeding for whitethroat warblers, goldfinches, thrushes and bullfinches.
One other notable habitat is provided by the canal. Heron and kingfisher visit to feed on the sticklebacks and both frogs and toads produce thousands of tadpoles in the spring. There are also two relatively unusual plant species – hornwort and water soldier.
Much of the work of The Friends has focussed on improving the biodiversity of the park by creating wildflower meadows and planting trees and hedgerows. Apart from the habitat this provides it also affords the park users the opportunity to see and interact with nature. The park is full of animals and plants and these provide interest all year round.
Credit to Phil Johnston for the photos