I enjoy exploring blocks of land that are not crossed by roads and the Botany Bay/Oakden/Tugley/Old Oakbottom complex of woods is one of those. Yep its all within Surrey, full public access and free. Look carefully to pick a parking spot as there are no formal car parks. Owned by the Forestry Authority and part managed by Butterfly Conservation it is a really special place.
Eating lunch in a clearing surrounded by orchids and the occasional burst of Nightingale, Emperor dragonflies hunting, (and horseflies) was then topped with several rather fast views of a Honey Buzzard! And then…….the day became more surreal with the appearance of a pair of Spotted Flycatchers!
A whole variety of birds during a day that we were really looking for butterflies! Unexpected pleasures. Surprises also came with the smaller residents. I had never seen one of these
I also got us fairly lost but had a beautiful day with a strange twist. On the way back to Godalming we passed a lady called Sarah who had sadly hit a Roe Deer and was trying to arrange with the police what to do as the deer was very much alive (but with at least a broken leg). We waited with her and the gently restrained deer (sorry folks if you were one of the many delayed on the Dunsfold Rd) as the RSPCA were going to be a little while. The good twist? By sheer chance a lovely guy from Hydestile Wildlife Hospital stopped and collected the doe, hopefully to fix or at least reduce the distress suffered. Thanks RSPCA and Hydestile and good on you for stopping Sarah.