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Chair’s Welcome

I am delighted as Chair of the Friends to welcome you to our website. Bushy Park and Home Park are two wonderful large green oases in the south west corner of London. Feeling wild, they are natural places with ancient histories, fascinating heritage and superb wildlife. Both are Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs) containing rare species. These are places to be enjoyed and conserved. Which is why the Friends exist, campaigning, supporting and protecting the parks, and enhancing visitors’ enjoyment with information, advice and guidance.

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Skylarks in Bushy Park

Skylarks in Bushy Park

It is that time of year when on days with clear blue skies the song of the Skylark can be heard. It is quite often heard but never seen, the male rises to incredible heights as he tries to stake a claim on a territory and of course to attract a female.
He will then parachute back down to the ground, where especially in Bushy Park where there is an abundance of anthills he will sing from the top of a favourite mound. In Bushy Park we have 2 main areas where this species can be seen; the area to the south of Upper Lodge Road is a large area of acid grassland, a habitat that this species requires. It likes to build its nest which is well hidden under a grass canopy. The other area that they are found is the corner south of the Oval Plantation, where at this time of the year we erect signs asking those members of the public with dogs to put the on the lead. We ask this as the birds in this area have been pushed into a smaller and smaller section of the park by the spread of the Bracken. In the last 2 years we have sprayed large patches of Bracken in this area so that it can return to acid grassland once more. This will then provide more opportunities for the Skylarks to nest and we will then see a rise in a species that has declined so much in the UK in recent years. Last year the park had at least 18 pairs present, breeding was confirmed at 12 sites.

See details of the legal status of skylarks

Walks & Talks

Forthcoming event

Friday, 25th Jan 8:00 pm

Talk by Ian Jones-Healy “Dr John Langdon Down and the history of Normansfield“.

Latest report

On the morning of Saturday 3 November a group of members of the Friends assisted Sharon Evans, the Bushy Park Head Gardener, in planting an area of the Woodland Gardens.

Full report...