Its that special time of the year down here at the secret campsite. We all look forward to it with baited breath, but never know the exact date. Its the day when our foreign friends, the nightingales return from their overseas travels to more balmy climes.

This year the campsite seems to have an abundance of these melodic birds according to a local birding and wildlife expert. Simon, who walks the wildlife filled, old railway track that runs through the campsite claims to have heard at least 5 male birds establishing their territory and singing through the night.

What nightingales like about the secret campsite

Nightingales prefer brambles and scrub vegetation as it offers them great protection from predators. This is good news for us as I am quite lazy and there is plenty of this sort of habitat in and around the campsite.

Just try and spot the nightingale singing in this tree

Can’t see him

Each year these shy, secretive and rather dowdy birds fly back from their winter holidays in other parts of the world, this 4000 mile trip back from Guinea in West Africa is pretty exhausting so Sussex is a welcomed spot to recover over the spring and summer. Nightingales or as the more professional amongst us know them as Luscinia megarhynchos are red status and protected under the wildlife and countryside act of 1981. Red status means they are in danger and there numbers have declined by 90% in the last 50 years which is miserable.

We often get quite a few people camping with us at the secret campsite when they are enjoying Sam Lees fantastic, singing with nightingales events. These lovely evenings run nearby in the beautiful Knowlands woodland which borders the campsite.

Hopefully we will get to meet you if you fancy hearing the nightingales in real life rather than the brilliant rspb rendition which is a poor substitute.

Either way, its worth having a think to see if there is anything you can do to help these wonderful summer visitors to mount a fightback

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