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'Dawn chorus walks' on National Cycle Network in York

A long tailed tit

Long tailed tit, a bird that has been known to appear in gardens

17 May 2018

This Saturday (19 May 2018) we're running a 'Dawn Chorus Walk' as part of a series of walks and a cycle ride to celebrate the rich birdlife supported by York’s urban cycle and walking routes.

Our Site Foreman Andy Chapman will lead walks along York’s Solar System Way (York to Selby) and the Foss Islands Path along with a cycle ride from the Minster. 

Join Andy to discover the range of birds you can see and hear on this wonderful stretch of greenway. Andy has 20 years’ experience volunteering and leading walks with the RSPB and has an excellent knowledge of the local area.

From the low whistling call of the Bullfinch to the high pitched tinkle of the Corn bunting he will be on hand to help identify all their calls.

With the summer visitor’s now back in residence, the city’s cycle paths are once again cacophony of sound in the early morning.

Andy recorded the sounds of 32 species of birds on just one walk along the Solar System Way last month. He says some birds which are threatened by changes in farming in many areas are thriving along the cycle routes: 

“Tree sparrows are suffering big declines but they are using this linear highway of trees, bushes and scrub between York and Selby to nest and feed in. We’ve put in new feeding stations to encourage them to move along the path.

“Threatened Yellow wagtails are a summer migrant of farmland that you can see and hear and they feed along the cycle corridor along with the rarer Corn Bunting. Barn owls can also be seen on the York to Selby path. Our grassland corridors give them a safe haven to hunt.

“House sparrows, which are in decline throughout the country are seen readily on the Foss Islands path and garden birds such as robin, gold finch, blackbird, song thrush and Bullfinch not to mention the elusive Sparrowhawk, that may be seen swooping along the paths looking for a quick meal on the wing.”

We manage York’s 'Solar System Way' and the 'Foss Islands Path' cycle and walking routes as part of the National Cycle Network.

The 'Cycling Dawn Chorus' hosted by Bike Belles is on Saturday 2 June from  the Minster (meeting by the entrance).

Interested in joining the walks? Find out more and register via Eventbrite below:

Saturday 19 May, York's Solar System Way

Friday 1 June, Foss Islands Path