Wednesday, 31 December 2014
I thought the last trip out for 2014 would be to Babbs Mill Nature Reserve in Solihull being as I haven't been there very often this year, which was just as well because everywhere looked great in the early morning frost.
Highlight of the day had to be seeing a pair of Goldcrest, unbelievably I've seen a pair of Goldcrest on the last four visits out, something of a record for me, that's with also having a pair visiting my small garden in Birmingham, talking of my garden it's worth mentioning as well as record numbers of Tits visiting I also had a female Blackcap taking advantage of one of the suet cakes hanging in my apple tree. It was also nice to see a huge flock of Goldfinch in the car park, hard to tell the count exactly but they were in the hundreds feeding in amongst the Silver Birch, it was great to also see Greenfinch, Bullfinch, House Sparrow, Green Woodpecker, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Jay and Widgeon.
I also spotted a Buzzard being mobbed by a lone but very plucky Carrion Crow, unfortunately it it did was chase into the Yorks Wood which is heavily polluted with songbirds.
The only downside was seeing the lake almost completely frozen over, I know it's natural but I don't like to see the waterfowl struggling also for some reason they were fighting a lot more than usual today probably because there was a lot less space to move about in.
Birds seen today were Buzzard, Goldcrest, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Goldfinch, Greenfinch, Bullfinch, House Sparrow, Robin, Wren, Green Woodpecker, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Jay, Collared Dove, Blackbird, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Woodpigeon, Feral Pigeon, Mute Swan, Moorhen, Coot, Widgeon, Mallard, Tufted Duck, Domestic Goose and Canada Goose.
I hope everyone who takes the time out to read this blog has had a nice Christmas and you have a great New Year !
My first trip out of 2015 will be Kingsbury Water Park on Friday all being well.
Monday, 29 December 2014
Paid a visit to Rookery Park in Erdington which is a great little park with a variety of trees, large areas of grassland and plenty of bushes, unfortunately the surrounding areas to the park which is a rich habitat for a wide range of birds has been brought up by a developer and is going to have houses built on the land, so not only will that wild habitat be lost forever but it will only have negative effects on the park as a whole.
I was only passing through the area so I could only visit the park for an hour but it was still great to see birds in abundance probably because it was the first sub zero night in Birmingham this Autumn/Winter, so there were plenty of Blackbirds, Tits, Finches and surprisingly lots of Magpies foraging.
Highlights were seeing a pair of Goldcrest and Nuthatch, House Sparrows and Dunnocks and seeing a Mistle Thrush having a good old sing song.
Birds seen today were, Goldcrest, Nuthatch, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Goldfinch, Chaffinch, Robin, House Sparrow, Dunnock, Robin, Starling, Mistle Thrush, Blackbird, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Woodpigeon and Feral Pigeon.
Tuesday, 23 December 2014
I decided to go back to Sutton Park again today following Saturday's visit, Saturday's visit took in walks around Blackroot, Bracebridge and Little Bracebridge pools where today I went to Longmoor pool and walked around a large part of the heathland and areas populated mainly by Pine, Alder and Silver Birch.
Highlights had to be seeing Goldcrest, Treecreeper and Nuthatch again, seeing a small flock of Redwing in the same area as a mixed flock of Goldfinch, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit and Chaffinch, plenty of Jay and it's always a pleasure to see House Sparrow and Dunnock.
The only downside (apart from the sporadic amounts of litter including a bucket of KFC and all the contents strewn everywhere including the receipt from Woking !) was that even though there are still five of this years Cygnet's left, the adults are trying to shun one of them away, I don't know why ones been singled out buy hopefully it's not harmed or even worse killed.
Birds seen today were Goldcrest, Treecreeper, Nuthatch, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, House Sparrow, Dunnock, Wren, Robin, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Jay, Redwing, Song Thrush, Blackbird, Woodpigeon, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Grey Heron, Mute Swan, Coot, Tufted Duck and Mallard.
Saturday, 20 December 2014
Another nice early trip out, this time to North Birmingham to visit the huge and always worth visiting Sutton Park.
Highlight of the day was a toss up between seeing a flock of Goldcrest foraging amongst an area highly populated with pine trees, also seen with the Goldcrests were Coal Tit, Treecreeper, Nuthatch and various Tits, thankfully it was also nice to see Treecreeper and Nuthatch in various other locations during my visit. The other highlight was seeing three Exmoor Ponies grazing on grass by the Bracebridge Pool of which I'll upload a couple of videos of which you'll find a link to an my homepage.
The only disappointment was seeing no Song Thrush, Redwing, Fieldfare and not a great variety on the pools.
Birds seen today were Buzzard, Goldcrest, Treecreeper, Nuthatch, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Coal Tit, Chaffinch, Robin, Wren, Dunnock, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Blackbird, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Woodpigeon (including a juvenile feasting on holly berries), Great Crested Grebe, Moorhen, Coot, Tufted Duck and Mallard.
Another pleasant surprise was finding some nice Yellow Brain Fungus which you can see in the bottom picture.
Wednesday, 17 December 2014
Nice early trip out to Shustoke Reservoir today as soon as I'd had a coffee in the car park, put seed down in various places for the birds and it was light enough I was off.
Highlights were seeing a flock of c.100 of Woodpigeon fly up from the ground in a farmers field, a flock of c.80 Goldfinch feasting on Alder tree along the river, over the reservoir it was great to see a flock of c.50 Lapwing circling the water, on the fly fishers pool it was pleasant to see a lone female Goosander, finally it was nice to see a male Pheasant, that thankfully some Hooray Henry hasn't shot yet.
Birds seen today were Blue Tit, Great Tit, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Robin, House Sparrow, Dunnock, Wren, Starling, Blackbird, Jay, Jackdaw, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Woodpigeon, Pied Wagtail, Grey Wagtail, Pheasant (Cock), Lapwing, Grey Heron, Mute Swan, Goosander (Female), Gadwall, Pochard, Tufted Duck, Mallard, Little Grebe, Great Crested Grebe, Coot and Canada Goose.
Unfortunately on the road outside the Reservoir there was a dead Muntjac Deer that was definitely not there on the inward journey, I couldn't just leave it in the road to be squashed by a lorry like most people can so on went the gardening gloves and I moved it to a much better resting place.
I stopped off at Coleshill again on the way home to have dinner and notable events were seeing a Carrion Crow have a very lucky escape with a Sparrowhawk, a flock of c.100 Starling, a pair of Collared Dove, c.20 Blackbird and c.30 Pied Wagtail on the Coleshill Memorial Park grass and seeing and hearing the resident House Sparrow population.
Tuesday, 9 December 2014
Another trip over to Solihull today this time to visit Meriden Park where I also took in a walk around Colebank Nature Reserve which was just as well because this was where the majority of the birds were seen with plenty of flocks of Tits, including a flock of c.40 Long Tailed Tit and a mixed flock of .50 Blue and Great Tit, also in the car park there was a flock of c.50 Long Tailed Tit and c.40 Goldfinch.
On the water is was nice to see a couple of Little Grebe and the resident Greylag/Domestic Goose plus plenty of Mallard.
Birds seen today were Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Goldfinch, Robin, House Sparrow, Dunnock, Wren, Song Thrush, Blackbird, Pied Wagtail, Grey Wagtail, Cormorant, Grey Heron (at least three), Little Grebe, Coot and Mallard.
Tuesday, 2 December 2014
Had a trip over to Sutton today to visit Newhall Valley Country Park where in all honesty there wasn't a lot of bird activity with the most exciting things saw were a Treecreeper, a nice mixed flock of Tits (Blue, Great and Long Tailed Tit), and seeing a young Grey Heron 'fishing' on the Plantsbrook, but as always it's always about what you see. it's just nice to get out and about.
Birds seen today were Treecreeper, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Goldfinch, House Sparrow, Robin, Wren, Starling, Song Thrush, Blackbird, Woodpigeon, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Pied Wagtail, Grey Heron, Moorhen, Mallard and Canada Goose.
Saturday, 29 November 2014
Another trip over to Warwickshire today, this time to visit Kingsbury Water Park which looked great in all it's Autumnal loveliness.
A mixed bag of news today unfortunately, firstly I'll start with the good news, it's was great to see plenty of mixed flock of birds, mostly Tits and Finches, there was a great flocks of c.50 Goldfinch by the waters edge near the visitors centre feasting on Alder berries also in the same area was a flock of c.50 Chaffinch foraging on the grass, finally around one of the pools there was a mixed flock of Blue, Great and Long Tailed Tit making their way from one tree to another. In that same area there was also two Little Egret having a noisy quarrel. On the water it was great to see plenty of Great Crested Grebe and Shoveler as well as the resident Greylag Geese.
Now I have to get to the bad news, right near the entrance to Tamworth Sailing Club there was a young Black Headed Gull lying on the floor looking very distressed, so I approached it and picked it up and it had clearly had at least one broken wing, so I thought I'd take it to someone in the shop (she was useless and disinterested) so I tried a ranger (he just ignored me) regardless of all this, the poor creature passed away during this time, the poor bird looked like it had been the victim of a car strike because unbelievably in exactly the same area there were two recent Moorhen victims as well because when I picked them up they hadn't been dead for very long, being as the car park was full and it's near a bend I can only presume they had died due to the careless driving of the patrons of Tamworth Sailing Club, if I'm correct they should hang their heads in shame especially as the Gull was left dying, injured by the road side and the Moorhens were left discarded on top of a pile of bark chippings like some rubbish ! I took all three birds about half an hour into the woods off the beaten track and gave them at least a half decent burial because personally I can't just leave deceased wildlife rotting away on the side of the road.
Birds seen today were Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Greenfinch, House Sparrow, Dunnock, Wren, Robin, Green Woodpecker, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Blackbird, Woodpigeon, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Pied Wagtail, Cormorant, Little Egret, Grey Heron, Mute Swan, Great Crested Grebe, Moorhen, Coot, Shoveler, Gadwall, Domestic Duck, Tufted Duck, Mallard, Greylag Goose and Canada Goose.
I also stopped off in Coleshill for dinner after my birding trip to Kingsbury Water Park, but I'm always birding so birds I saw were a fantastic flock of c.50 House Sparrow in a tree in the memorial park, plenty of Pied Wagtail foraging on the grass in the park, another fantastic flock, this time of c.100 Starling by Coleshill Fire Station, Collared Dove, Jackdaw and a lovely looking juvenile Woodpigeon.
Thursday, 27 November 2014
Had a trip to Ward End Park today being as I was passing through the area and had an hour to spare.
Nothing much to report really apart from there were the usual c.100 Canada Goose present, both on the water and feeding on the grass, there was also a lone Domestic Duck but unfortunately the Silver Appleyard Duck I've seem on previous visits was nowhere to be seen, let's hope it was just out of sight and no harm has come to it like the Mute Swan (one of this years Cygnets) at Pype Hayes Park that has been found beheaded and dumped on the grass, I don't know anymore about this despicable act but I have seen the pictures and I'll let you know more if and when I find anything more about this incident.
Birds seen today were Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Goldfinch, Wren, Robin, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Song Thrush, Blackbird, Woodpigeon, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Pied Wagtail, Grey Heron, Cormorant, Coot, Mallard, Tufted Duck, Domestic Duck, Greylag Goose and Canada Goose.
Thursday, 20 November 2014
Another great trip out to Warwickshire to visit Shustoke Reservoir where there were plenty of birds present both on and off the water.
Highlights were seeing a flock of c.20 Corn Bunting foraging on the floor in open grassland adjacent to the railway line, Corn Bunting were also spotted foraging on the concrete floor around the reservoir where the water has receded, talking of the reservoir it was brilliant to see upward of 40 Mute Swan on the water especially as there were some of this years Cygnets at different stages of development so presumably adults and young have flown in from various locations, there were also c.80 Lapwing present who showed their presence when a Buzzard flew over when they went into full protection mode by taking to the skies and making one heck of a noise until said Buzzard took off, also seen were a flock of Siskin flitting about the pine trees, it was also great to see there was a flock of .c100 Woodpigeon flying out of a tree in one of the farmers fields and dispersing in all directions.
Birds seen today were, Sparrowhawk (taking a songbird), Buzzard, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Coal Tit, Chaffinch, Greenfinch, House Sparrow, Dunnock, Wren, Robin, Corn Bunting, Siskin, Nuthatch, Redwing, Blackbird, Jackdaw, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Woodpigeon, Pied Wagtail, Grey Wagtail, Grey Heron, Lapwing, Mute Swan, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Little Grebe, Shoveler, Pochard, Tufted Duck, Mallard, Greylag Goose and Canada Goose.
Tuesday, 18 November 2014
It was nice to see that the Mute Swans and this years young have made the trip from Plantsbrook Nature Reserve to Pype Hayes Park, they normally come over in May when they are very small Cygnets but apparently they came over a few weeks ago and look strong and healthy, the only downside being that there were originally six and now there's only four. I've said this on a few occasions before but the Muscovy Duck now looks great and appears to be thriving here, I even seen it bullying Mallards today and not being scared off by them like it used to.
Other than that, highlights were seeing four Bullfinch flying over the river, seeing many Wren along the river, which are clearly much easier to see now that the Himalayan Balsam has died down, finally it was great to see the park full of (noisy) Song Thrush and Blackbirds even though yet another tree has been chopped down, that's double figures they've cut down this year, God knows why ?
Birds seen today were Blue Tit, Great Tit, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Bullfinch, Robin, Wren, House Sparrow, Nuthatch, Song Thrush, Jay, Blackbird, Jackdaw, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Woodpigeon, Pied Wagtail, Mute Swan, Moorhen, Coot, Muscovy Duck, Mallard and Canada Goose.
Saturday, 15 November 2014
Had another trip over to Solihull to visit Babbs Mill Nature Reserve which looked great in it's Autumnal colours but with winter just around the corner.
Again I was hoping to see plenty of Redwing and Fieldfare but alas I saw neither, in fact the most exciting sights were seen above today, namely that of two separate flocks of c.50 Woodpigeon flying overhead one to the left of where I was looking and the other to the right, also seen flying overhead at the same time were a flock of c.20 Tufted Duck and c.20 Shoveler.
There were lots of waterfowl on Kingshurst Lake with around c.100 Coot, c.50 Canada Geese, c.10 Mute Swan, it was also nice to around c.30 Shoveler, unfortunately the Domestic Geese are now down to 8, they've always had a hard time ever since they were 'dumped' here.
Birds seen today were Blue Tit, Great Tit, Chaffinch, Bullfinch, House Sparrow, Dunnock, Wren, Robin, Starling, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Song Thrush, Jay, Blackbird, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Woodpigeon, Feral Pigeon, Pied Wagtail, Grey Heron, Mute Swan, Moorhen, Coot, Shoveler, Gadwall, Tufted Duck, Mallard, Domestic Goose and Canada Goose.