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The Ash Tree

One of the most common trees in the UK. However, as ash dieback sweeps across the country it seems likely to go the same way as the ELM and disappear from the countryside.

The Ash is one of the easiest trees to identify even in winter. It has pale brown to grey bark and smooth twigs with black velvety buds arranged opposite each other and one at the end. Look for the black buds you can’t miss them.

The Ash is dioecious meaning you have male and female flowers usually on separate trees. However, you can get both on the same tree with individual branches being either male or female. The purple flowers appear in spring at the end of the twigs before the leaves arrive. Once the flowers are pollinated by wind action the fruits start to form. The leaves appear soon after the flowers and are an important food source for many moths including the privet hawkmoth.

The JAC does not have a list of moths that use Kingfisher Pool and if you find any could you please take a photo and send it to us.

The Ash is also a perfect habitat for many other different species of wildlife. It supports a large range of insects which in turn feed the insect eating birds. The bullfinches love to eat the seeds and woodpeckers, owls, redstarts and nuthatches all like to nest in Ash trees.

You may also see lichens and mosses growing on the bark. In late summer and autumn you will see the ash winged fruits called ‘keys' hanging in bunches. These dispersed by wind, birds and mammals.

Find the Ash tree and check it out.

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