THE SKYLARKS REGENERATION PROJECT 2020
OveriewThere are many references to skylarks on this website - for a start, our logo is based on this irresistible and intriguing bird, and it is also provides the title of our quarterly newsletter. Back in the early days of The Wick Country Park, Skylarks were commonly seen flying high in the sky overhead, but now they have sadly gone.
The Project's aimsThis project concerned the regeneration of an area in the Park to encourage the Skylarks back by planting Teasel seeds, which were purchased for the Council by the Friends. A substantial area within the Park was prepared early in 2020, and it was sown in early April 2020. That all turned out to be unfortunate timing, as the sowing was followed by a prolonged dry spell - some rain would have promoted germination!
The teasel is a tall plant and is identified by a cone-like flower head with flowers that are tiny and purple, and then the seed heads turn brown in winter. Teasels are visited by bees when in flower and by birds when in seed. Importantly, the plants also provide essential cover for ground-nesting birds, such as skylarks.
To be completely open, this project has turned out to be a huge disappointment. As at the time of writing (March 2022), the germination rate has been very poor, though we live in hope that those plants that did survive the untimely drought will self-seed and multiply. More can be read about this project in issue number 63 of our Skylarks Newsletter.