Thursday, 29 January 2015

Cole End Park Local Nature Reserve, Coleshill, Warwickshire.

I'd actually been birding around this area exactly four years ago when large areas were messy and largely inaccessible but when I noticed it had been made a Local Nature Reserve in April 2013 I decided to go and have another look and the area which is now a LNR is a great improvement with many habitats including London Plane, Cherry, Rowan, Silver Birch, Hazel. Hawthorn, Field Maple, Large Leaved Lime, Hybrid Black Poplar, Red Oak, English Oak and Crack Willow trees, it also has the added bonus of the River Cole and large areas of open grassland to explore.

Even though there wasn't a huge amounts of birds around it was still definitely worth going and I shall go back in Spring when there should be more birds around and it won't look as sparse even though I do still like do like how trees and bushes look in Winter.

Birds seen were, Buzzard, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, House Sparrow, Wren, Robin, Song Thrush, Blackbird, Jackdaw, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Woodpigeon, Pied Wagtail, Grey Wagtail, Moorhen, Coot and Mallard.

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Sheldon Country Park.

Trip over to Sheldon Country Park today for a change where there the usual mix of birds around including the usual large amounts of House Sparrow which I love to see anywhere I go, there was good numbers of Collared Dove present especially near the houses, other than that it was nice to hear lots of Song Thrush singing as well as plenty of Wrens, there were also a few vocal Nuthatch around.

Birds seen today were, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, House Sparrow, Wren, Dunnock, Robin, Nuthatch, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Song Thrush, Jay, Collared Dove, Blackbird, Carrion Crow, Woodpigeon and Feral Pigeon.

On a personnel level it was great to see one of Birmingham Airports Fire and Rescue OSHKOSH Striker's go past with the 'blues and twos' on whilst blue light training, if you've looked at my Flickr or YouTube channels you'll have have noticed I document Emergency Service Vehicles, so seeing this was a real added bonus whilst out birding.

Also here's my bird count for last weekends RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch,

Blue Tit 5,
Great Tit 3,
House Sparrow 23,
Dunnock 2,
Wren 1,
Robin 2,
Starling 4,
Blackbird 5,
Woodpigeon 4,
Feral Pigeon 8,
Carrion Crow 3,
Magpie 2,
and last but not least, Grey Heron 1.

Thursday, 22 January 2015

Pype Hayes Park.

A visit to Pype Hayes Park was well overdue so today was the day to break that duck, no pun intended.

Sight of the day had to be seeing two Buzzards hunting in a very wooded area by the Plants Brook on Pype Hayes Golf Course literally feet apart which wasn't good news for the plethora of songbirds that are normally in that area. Apart from that it was great to hear and see Nuthatches and see Grey Wagtails foraging along the Plants Brook.

On the pool there were plenty of Mallards and Canada Geese, Mute Swans as well as visiting Tufted Ducks. 

The Muscovy Duck who was brought here by the RSPCA in July 2013 after being mistreated by his former owners when he looked not too great and his feathers were in a right sorry and wouldn't come too close, now looks fantastic and appears to love life on the pool and is not fearful anymore, hopefully being friendly with humans doesn't backfire on him.

Birds seen today were Buzzard, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Robin, Dunnock, Starling, Nuthatch, Jay, Blackbird, Jackdaw, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Woodpigeon, Feral Pigeon, Grey Wagtail, Mute Swan, Moorhen, Coot, Tufted Duck, Mallard, Muscovy Duck and Canada Goose.

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Shustoke Reservoir.

Nice trip out to North Warwickshire today to visit Shustoke Reservoir which looked great in the frost and moody skylines.

There wasn't a great mixture of birds about today but most species spotted were present in abundance including two Kestrels hunting at both ends of the fly fishers pool. Birds most seen today were the usual mixture of Tits and Finches including a large flock of c.50 Chaffinch seen foraging on the floor that was coppiced a couple of years back, the ground must have been rich in insects etc, because also foraging were Song Thrush, Blackbird, Blue Tit, Great Tit and Robins coincidentally above were Alder trees which held c.30 Goldfinch. It was also nice to see some male Pheasant in one of the farmers fields, equally as pleasing to see where huge numbers of Blackbird turning the leaves over on the grassy area in the picnic area of the reservoir

On the pool it was nice to see Mute Swans because they aren't also present here, the numbers included four of this years Cygnets who flew in whilst I was walking around the Reservoir, double figures of Little Grebe, Goosander, Shoveler, Gadwall and Pochard..

Birds seen today were Kestrel, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Dunnock, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Song Thrush, Blackbird, Collared Dove, Jackdaw, Carrion Crow, Woodpigeon, Pheasant (Cock), Pied Wagtail, Mute Swan, Little Grebe, Great Crested Grebe, Goosander, Shoveler, Gadwall, Pochard, Tufted Duck, Mallard, Coot and Canada Goose.

Friday, 16 January 2015

Kingsbury Water Park, North Warwickshire.

I decided to visit Kingsbury Water Park in North Warwickshire again after last Friday's enjoyable visit and today didn't disappoint either especially with all the wonderful Shoveler still present on the largest lake.

As like last weeks visit there were plenty of Tits and Finches present plus an abundance of Robin's with literally hundreds seen today. A pleasant surprise as well was to see a pair of Goldcrest in amongst a mixed flock of Tits which also mainly contained Long Tailed Tits. Also still present today were the Little Egret colony, I didn't see as many as last week but they were still in double figures. On one of the smaller lakes there was a flock of fourteen Cormorant, I don't normally see that many together on a small pool. Also nice to see were .c130 Canada Geese grazing on the grass and nearby on the banks of the River Tame.

Last week I mentioned that I thought I saw a Carrion Crow in a tree but then said oh no it's a black carrier bag but for some reason I thought the same but something made me take a closer look through the binoculars and I was indeed it was a bird or to be more precise it was a the remains of a Carrion Crow stuck high up in a tree as you can see in the last picture.

Birds seen today were, Goldcrest, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Coal Tit, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Greenfinch, House Sparrow, Dunnock, Wren, Robin, Starling, Song Thrush, Jay, Blackbird, Collared Dove, Jackdaw, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Woodpigeon, Feral Pigeon, Pied Wagtail, Little Egret, Cormorant, Grey Heron, Mute Swan, Great Crested Grebe, Moorhen, Coot, Shoveler, Tufted Duck, Mallard, Domestic Duck, Greylag Goose and Canada Goose.

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Shard End Lake.

It was time to have a trip to Shard End Lake today to see how the wildlife was fairing where there were certainly plenty of birds flying about especially as the sun was rising above the horizon.

Spot of the day had to be seeing a Kingfisher flying over the waters surface from one island to the other on the lake, it was also nice to see Goosander on the lake and a pair of Bullfinch in the trees adjacent to the River Cole. Another highlight was seeing a Sparrowhawk and a Kestrel, unfortunately the Kestrel was seen watching the songbirds in a tree overlooking a large grassy area and the Sparrowhawk was seen and heard watching birds in a garden where birds are fed but that's nature.

Birds seen today were, Sparrowhawk, Kestrel, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Chaffinch, Bullfinch, House Sparrow, Dunnock, Robin, Blackbird, Woodpigeon, Carrion Crow, Grey Heron, Cormorant, Kingfisher, Goosander, Moorhen, Coot, Tufted Duck, Mallard and Canada Goose.

Friday, 9 January 2015

Kingsbury Water Park, North Warwickshire.

Finally got to Kingsbury Water Park a week later than planned, I've been trying for a week but due to rain and hurting my leg it didn't happen, it was worth the wait though with quite a few highlights.

First off,  I've rarely seen more than one Little Egret in one place at the same time so to see fourteen was quite a sight, they were on a island with lots of trees and bushes so there may have been even more, on the pool adjacent there were c.200 Shoveler which was amazing to see, it was just a pity I couldn't get a photo because whenever I got near them they were off. In a field that is adjacent to the park there were c.100 Canada Goose grazing on the grass, it's always nice to see Goose grazing out of harms way where people leave them alone. Talking of Geese there were twenty four Greylag Geese present which is more than my last visit so they may have been joined by other birds or they could have been in two separate groups on my last visit. I also had a flock of c.40 Lapwing fly over, they may have landed somewhere else in the park but I'm not sure. Also worth a mention was the sighting of a flock of c.50 Goldfinch along with the many other smaller flocks of Tits and Finches I saw today.

Birds seen today were Buzzard, Kestrel, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Coal Tit, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, House Sparrow, Dunnock, Robin, Starling, Pied Wagtail, Green Woodpecker, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Collared Dove, Blackbird, Woodpigeon, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Cormorant, Grey Heron, Mute Swan, Shoveler, Gadwall, Pochard, Tufted Duck, Mallard, Domestic Duck, Moorhen, Coot, Great Crested Grebe, Greylag Goose and Canada Goose.

I shall uploaded videos from today's visit on my YouTube channel in the next few days.