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The Wider Golfing Experience

The Open Championship is being held at The Royal St George’s Golf Course in Sandwich. Following a recent BBC documentary, Bob Taylor reports that there may be more to observe to widen your golfing experience. Bob Taylor is the Head of Ecology and Environment at the Sports Turf Research Institute (STRI). He appeared on a BBC Springwatch documentary on the 15th June, highlighting how flora and fauna are flourishing on golf courses in the UK.

The BBC team joined Bob at The Royal Cinque Ports Golf Course and Royal St George’s Golf Club in Kent to study the wildlife. They saw many skylarks in full flight which is great news as the numbers of skylarks have been decreasing in previous years. They also spotted wheatears, hen harriers, rabbits and green winged orchid, which develop well on sandy soils. “Clearly here is a good Skylark habitat, the reason for that is you’ve got these rough areas the birds like to nest in and next to these are fairways and greens, which are ideal Skylark landing pads” (Richard Taylor-Jones reporting for Springwatch)

Skylark can be seen at Royal St Georges golf club

Wild rabbits can be spotted in Royal St Georges, Sandwich

Green winged orchid

If you are an animal lover then after your golfing experience you could visit Sandwich Bay Bird Observatory Trust (SBBOT) which is close to Royal St George’s and hold walks, talks, boat trips and workshops for all interested. At the SSBOT you can observe butterflies and dragonflies, but also, birds, moths, spiders, damselflies, caterpillars and mammals. Admission for non-members will only cost you £1 on entry. Word of warning! The SSBOT is closed for the duration of The Open Championships (11th-18th July) so make sure you squeeze in an extra day to view these spectacular animals! For more information please visit: http://www.sbbot.co.uk/

A lot of golf courses do take on the responsibility of managing wildlife alongside golf which is fantastic for those who visit them as it brings a much wider golfing experience to all.

Mulberry have a range of luxury cottages within easy reach of the Royal St George’s Golf Course and the SBBOT. For further enquiries please visit: http://www.mulberrycottages.com/golf-open/

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