Thursday, 27 April 2017

Thursday April 27th


Alvecote Pools
Warks: The five Black-tailed Godwits are still present plua a Whinchat (Bob Duckhouse).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Garden Warbler, four Whinchats, Wheatear, three Yellow Wagtails, Arctic Tern, five Swifts, Egyptian Goose (various observers). Garden Warbler was present yesterday (Steve Cawthray).

by Paul Casey


Shustoke Reservoir
32 Common Terns, two Common Sandpipers, 300 Sand Martins




Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Wednesday April 26th


Alvecote Pools
Staffs: Four Common Sandpipers at Pigs (Roy Smith).
Warks: Five Black-tailed Godwits still (Bob Duckhouse).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Four Whinchats, two Wheatears, Hobby and some kind birders (Claire Workman, Kevin Whiston).

Shustoke Res
30 Common Terns, Swift, c.600 mixed hirundines, White Wagtail, two Wheatears (Pete Forbes).

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Tuesday April 25th


Alvecote Pools
Warks: Three Whinchats, White Wagtail, Yellow Wagtail (Simon Rose). Five Black-tailed Godwit in the evening (per Adam Archer)

by Simon Rose

Ladywalk NR
Three Cuckoos, Common Sandpiper and 11 Common Terns through (Pete Sofley)

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Four Whinchats and two Wheatears at North end of Reserve (RSPB). Whimbrel and 11 Black-tailed Godwits (Staffs Bird News). Five Dunlin (Steve Pick).

Shustoke Res
33 Common Terns plus Swift this afternoon. Also Little Ringed Plover, Yellow Wagtail (Steve Pick et al).

Wishaw
A total of five Wheatears (Carl Hiles).



Monday, 24 April 2017

Monday April 24th


Ladywalk NR
Hobby, eight House Martins, two Cuckoos, five Whitethroats, six Sedge Warblers, two Garden Warblers, two Shovelers, six Teal (Pete Sofley).

Middleton RSPB
Another Osprey was seen today over the river.
Staffs: 12 Black-tailed Godwits, six Dunlins and four Common Sandpipers on Jubilee wetland. Five Wheatears at North Pit (Dave Hutton, RSPB). Two Whinchats (Mark Priest).
Warks: Two Egyptian geese, 12 Oystercatchers (Geoff Williams).

Shustoke Res
Five Swifts, 200 Sand Martins, 200 Swallows and odd House Martins. 15 Common Terns, two Arctic Terns and fledged Grey Wagtails (Pete Forbes, Dave Hutton, SMH).

Wishaw
Warks: A total of 12 Wheatears, three Yellow Wagtails and Peregrine (Pete Forbes).

Wheatears
25-30 were spread across paddocks and rough areas in North Warks today.

Sunday April 23rd


Ladywalk NR
Two Cuckoos, Ringed Plover, pair Linnet and a male Wigeon (Pete Lichfield).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: 12 Black-tailed Godwits, five Dunlins, two Common Sandpipers, Cuckoo (Tom Perrins, Dave Hutton)
Warks: Black Tern (Julian Allen), Common Sandpiper, Lesser Whitethroat (Tom Perrins).

Wishaw
Warks: Whinchat, Wheatear (Pete Forbes).

Saturday, 22 April 2017

Friday April 21st

Ladywalk NR
Cuckoo, White Wagtail, five Goosanders (Pete Lichfield).

by Pete Lichfield


Middleton RSPB
Staffs: 47 Black-tailed Godwits, two Dunlins, Common Sand and a few House Martins (Steve Atkinson)

Shustoke Res
17 Common Terns, two House Martins (Kevin Whiston).

Saturday April 22nd

Alvecote Pools
Warks: Grasshopper Warbler.

Ladywalk NR
Cuckoo and Common Sandpiper (Pete Sofley).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: 45 islandica Black-tailed Godwits, two Dunlins (Adam Archer).

Shustoke 
Three Swifts over village (Kevin Whiston).

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Thursday April 20th


Alvecote Pools
Warks: A Common Sandpiper and two Wheatears (Bob Duckhouse).

Middleton RSPB

Pretty, pretty, pretty Good
Dave Hutton

Staffs: Sixty two Black-tailed Godwits were on Jubilee Wetlands this morning (Steve Pick), with 86 and then 93 this evening (Edward O'Connor). This follows an extraordinary 557 at Rutland Water (Leics) yesterday and 49 at Grimley (Worcs) this morning. The Green-winged Teal was reported as present, but briefly. Also Dunlin and Common Sand.
Warks: Swift over Fisher's Mill (Pete Forbes).

by Steve Pick

Shustoke Res
13 Common Terns and a Common Sandpiper (Kevin Whiston).


Wednesday April 19th


Alvecote Pools
Warks: Great White Egret on Railway Pool, Teal and Redstart Mill Pool area and Osprey reported over (Roy Smith).

Ladywalk NR
Three Otters on view today from Hide B. Also Grasshopper Warbler (Pete Sofley, J&J Morris). A Cuckoo again, from Hide B (Pete Lichfield).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Green-winged Teal flew in to West scrape early afternoon. Also three Black-tailed Godwits (Dave Hutton).

by Dave Hutton
Also Wheatear by East screen, two Grasshopper Warblers and two Egyptian Geese (Steve Atkinson). Two Green Sandpipers flew north (John Harris).

by Bob Duckhouse





Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Tuesday April 18th


Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Green-winged Teal : a drake on West Scrape early evening (Edward O'Connor). This species has been seen in the past three years in Staffs. Also two Whimbrels which flew south at 0730hrs. Five Black-tailed Godwits and two Common Sandpipers (RSPB). Greenshank on Jubilee (Karl Sargent).
Warks: An Osprey flew over Fisher's Mill into Staffs this morning (Pete Forbes).

Shustoke Res
13 Common Terns, two Egyptian Geese (Steve Pick).

Monday April 17th


Alvecote Pools
Warks: The male Redstart is still in the area known as The Dingles (David Taylor). Great White Egret still and a Swift (Roy Smith).

Kingsbury WP
Hemlingford area: 11 terns, including at least one Arctic, two Yellow Wagtails, and Sedge Warbler (Matthew Pollock).

Ladywalk NR
Great White Egret flew from the north and left south-east mid-afternoon. Also Cuckoo, upto five Goosanders and three Teal (several observers). Five Willow Warblers off the Reserve (Kevin Whiston). Late news of a Red Kite on April 9th (Anthony Butcher).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Three Whimbrels mid-morning (Geoff Williams). Also three Dunlins, three Black-tailed Godwits, three Common Sandpipers, four Yellow Wagtails. A passage group of eight Redshanks were on North Pit (Steve Pick). Three Grasshopper Warblers and five Swifts (RSPB).
Warks: Lesser Whitethroat at Fisher's Mill (Geoff Williams) Also Common Sandpiper and two Grasshopper Warblers.

Shustoke Res
15 Common Terns, 200 Swallows, 200 Sand Martins and 10 House Martins (SMH).

A suspicious character was observed and photographed at Middleton this evening, seemingly engaged in obsessive and close observation of breeding birds. Details have been sent to the appropriate authorities and other local Reserves. It is possible that he was on site last week too when similar behaviour noted.

DO NOT TWEET or FACEBOOK ABOUT RARE OR LOCALLY SCARCE BREEDING BIRDS  - PLEASE

Sunday, 16 April 2017

Sunday April 16th

Alvecote Pools
Warks: Great White Egret on Mill Pool and Redstart nearby (Adam Archer). Also, Wheatear.

Dosthill Lake
Egyptian Goose, nine Oysercatchers and Common Tern.

Ladywalk NR
A surprise find today was a male Pied Flycatcher near Hide B (Pete Sofley). One of only a handful in the UK today, this was the second Reserve bird in two years after a female on April 30th and May 1st last year. Warks saw birds at an unprecedented, of late, six sites in Spring 2016. Also, four Common Sandpipers, Yellow & White Wagtail and a Whitethroat.

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Four Black-tailed Godwits and a Curlew
Warks: A drake Garganey at Fisher's Mill (Dave Hutton).

Pied Flycatchers

I wrote in 2014 that there were "no records again (in Warks) and that there were only seven records in the past five years". Similarly I gave the Kiss of Death to Greenshank records and after taking them out of a tabulated summary that year, there was a good series of records in 2015. Hence, I would like to think I am able to give the Kiss of Life to certain species and confidently predict another record Spring for Pied Flys. As always "Look to the Hills" for the best return.

Weather

A predicted north-easterly airflow, with overcast and cool conditions tomorrow might result in larger numbers of hirundines and the odd Little Gull or Arctic Tern, or maybe not.

Saturday, 15 April 2017

Saturday April 15th


Alvecote Pools
Warks: Great White Egret and Common Sandpiper (Roy Smith).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Four Black-tailed Godwits and four Dunlin. Grasshopper Warbler, Whitethroat, Sedge and Reed Warblers (Steve Pick).
Warks: Two Egyptian Geese on Dosthill Lake (Geoff Williams). Three Garganey (two drakes) still at Fisher's Mill (Steve Pick et al). Also Osprey north at 1210hrs (Ken Summers) and two Pochards. In the heronry, four Little Egrets.

Friday, 14 April 2017

Friday April 14th

Alvecote Pools
Staffs: A Great White Egret still at The Pigs (Adam Archer).

Bodymoor Heath
Two Wheatears, two Yellow Wagtails and a Corn Bunting over (RSPB).

Kingsbury WP
Three Common Terns, two Yellow Wagtails and 20 Pied wagtails (Matthew Pollock).

Ladywalk NR
Two Common Sandpipers, two Shelduck, Water Rail, Tawny Owl (Claire Workman).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: A possible hybrid Mediterranean x Black-headed Gull is on North Pit. Three Dunlin and four Blacl-tailed Godwits on Jubillee Wets (Karl Sargent).

Wishaw
West Mids: Three Wheatears plus three White Wagtails (Dean Baker, Carl Hiles).

Thursday April 13th


Ladywalk NR
Great White Egret flew through at 1325hrs plus a Common Sandpiper (Pete Lichfield).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Five Black-tailed Godwit, Common Sandpiper, a second-summer Mediterranean Gull, Yellow & White Wagtail (RSPB).

Shustoke Res
Six Common Terns again (Kevin Whiston).

Wishaw
West Mids: Two Yellow & three White Wagtails (Carl Hiles).

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Wednesday April 12th

Ladywalk NR
Six terns over this evening, presumably Common, heading back up the valley from Shustoke. Egyptian Goose, Common Sandpiper and Wheatear today (per Pete Lichfield).

 by Pete Lichfield
Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Great White Egret , five Black-tailed Godwits.
Warks: Grasshopper Warbler at Fisher's Mill (RSPB).

Wishaw
West Mids: Two Yellow Wagtails, four White Wagtails and two Wheatears (Matthew Pollock).
Warks: Two White Wagtails, two Grey Partridge (Chris Doyle).


Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Tuesday April 11th

Alvecote Pools
Staffs: Great White Egret at Pigs Pool still (Roy Smith).

Ladywalk NR
The first Reserve Reed Warbler now in with a drake Pochard on B Pools (Pete Lichfield).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: I've added a late record of Great White Egret for Sunday, the first for a while.
An Osprey flew north over both counties at 18.10hrs this evening (Arthur Warden). Eight Black-tailed Godwits earlier.

Right place at right time by Arthur Warden

Warks: Three Garganeys on Fisher's Mill again. Whitethroat on south meadow.

Wishaw
West Mids: "Several" White Wagtails (Geoff Williams) and two Yellow Wagtails (Carl Hiles). Seven Wheatears, five White Wagtails, 29 Linnets (Steve Cawthray).

Monday, 10 April 2017

Monday April 10th


Kingsbury WP
Three Yellow Wagtails on the meadow by Church. 500 Sand Martins and 20 Swallows at Hemlingford.

Ladywalk NR
Four Black-tailed Godwits flew over seemingly without pausing (J&J Morris). Still a Common Snipe present.

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: The above group of four Black-tailed Godwits were seen at Jubilee Wetlands later (Mark Priest).

Shustoke Res
Six Common Terns late afternoon (Kevin Whiston et al).

Wishaw
West Mids: Four Wheatears by the pylon on Wishaw Lane (Carl Hiles).

Wheatears are present in good numbers at present but as usual the best chance of finding a few is to aim for higher ground and check ploughed potato fields or set a side stubbly fields. The small paddocks and sheep pasture which circle Shustoke Res will also hold birds.

Sunday, 9 April 2017

Sunday April 9th


Alvecote Pools
Staffs: Great White Egret still.
Warks: Garganey still on Mill Pool, also Little Egret and eight Shelducks (Bob Duckhouse).

Ladywalk NR
A pair of Mediterranean Gulls was a great record for the Reserve, possibly a first (Ben Eaton).

Middleton RSPB
Seven Black-tailed Godwits, three Egyptian Geese and Wheatear (Adam Archer).

Warks: This evening a Sandwich Tern was found on the Silt Pool, reflecting other records today elsewhere in the Region (Julian Allen).
Staffs: Two Goldeneye and a Great White Egret on Dosthill NR (John & Pauline).

Saturday April 8th


Ladywalk NR
Otter and Redshank. 500 Black-headed Gulls (Ken Bentley).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Black-tailed Godwit still, with Willow Warbler nearby.
Warks: Drake Garganey at Fisher's Mill with Reed Warbler and Blackcap there (Steve Atkinson).

Friday, 7 April 2017

Friday April 7th


Alvecote Pools
Warks: A Great White Egret was at Mill Pool and Railway Pool this morning with the Garganey still present & three Swallows  (Bob Duckhouse, Jon Morgan, Roy Smith).
Staffs: Two Peregrines, Raven, Great White Egret (Bob Duckhouse).

Kingsbury WP
Two Yellow Wagtails and 14 Pied Wagtails on Kingsbury Meadow (Matthew Pollock).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Black-tailed Godwit and Garganey (RSPB).


Rare Breeding Birds

Many birders do not realise the rarity of some of the species we sometimes take for granted in the Tame Valley. These species are generally in decline in the UK and can suffer disturbamce from birders, often unintentionally, but also through ignorance of their status and rarity.

If a species is frequently seen in the Tame Valley it almost without exception does not mean that there are similar populations elsewhere in the county. In the case of Willow Tit and Lesser Spotted Woodpecker the county population can be counted on less than the fingers of two hands. Please protect the few that remain.

I would, therefore, like to draw notice to the link below, which highlights the species most at risk. These species are reported to the Rare Breeding Birds Panel by the county recorders, to whom records should be sent, in confidence.

 http://www.rbbp.org.uk/rbbp-species-list-full.htm

Thursday, 6 April 2017

Thursday April 6th


Alvecote Pools
Warks: A drake Garganey was on Railway Pool today (Roy Smith)

Kingsbury WP
A Great White Egret on Otter Pool and the Greenland White-front is on Cliffe Pool (Steve Cawthray).

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Wednesday April 5th


Ladywalk NR
A Great White Egret spent some time on both main pools before leaving firstly to the south and then to north (J & J Morris et al).



Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Tuesday April 4th


Alvecote Pools
Staffs: Two Great White Egrets were on Pigs Pool today.

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Nine Shelducks, two Egyptian geese.
Warks: Pair of Garganey still (Chris Vaghela).

Shustoke Res
Two Common Terns and two Shelducks (Pete Forbes).

Monday April 3rd


Kingsbury WP
A Common Tern on Hemlingford and 20 Pied Wagtails on the meadow (Matthew Pollock).

Ladywalk NR
Five Egyptian Geese, including the Shustoke four, two pairs of Goosanders, Curlew, two Little Ringed Plovers, two Oystercatchers (Pete Lichfield).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: A male Wheatear by the north pit. Garganey on Jubilee Wetlands with Ringed Plover and two Little Ringed Plovers. Sedge Warbler still by the screens (Karl Sargent et al).
Warks: Two Garganeys remain on Fisher's Mill (Karl Sargent).

by Mark Priest

Shustoke Res
Four Egyptian Geese, Common Tern and Oystercatcher. 100 Sand Martin and a Swallow in the evening (Pete Forbes).


Sunday, 2 April 2017

Sunday April 2nd


Kingsbury WP
Common Tern at Hemlingford (following on from one at Marsh Lane NR yesterday) plus a Swallow (Dave Hutton).

Ladywalk NR
An early Common Whitethroat was across the river today. The average first arrival in the WMBC Region is currently April 7th. Also, five Blackcap, seven Willow Warblers, three Swallows, 67 Shoveler, 12 Wigeon, 17 Teal (Pete Sofley).

Middleton RSPB
Warks: Three Garganeys still (John Mathers).
Staffs: Four Little Ringed Plovers (John Mathers).
Other reports not assigned to a county, Scaup, and Sedge Warbler.

Shustoke Res
Probably a site first was the magnificent two Egyptian Geese flying over today. Also two Shelducks (Pete Forbes).

Rare breeding birds will not be advertised on this Blog and we would urge folk to not tweet about them or discuss them in hides etc. There are many active eggers in the Coventry area, especially, and we would not wish to put these, already threatened species, into further decline. Please think very carefully about publishing information and photographs on social media.

Saturday, 1 April 2017

Saturday April 1st


Alvecote Pools
Warks: Two Great White Egrets on Mill Pool, six Swallows and a House Martin (Adam Archer). Redshank  (Bob Duckhouse).

Bodymoor Heath
275 Fieldfares by Dog & Doublet and Greenland White-fronted Goose near Water Park entrance but mobile (Dave Hutton).

Coton Lakes
Ten Swallows, five Willow Warblers, four Blackcaps and "hundreds of Sand Martins" (Dave Hutton).

Kingsbury WP
c.500 Sand Martins, three Swallows, three Blackcaps and two Willow Warblers (Dave Hutton).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Sedge Warbler near East screen (RSPB).
Warks: Three Garganeys still on Fisher's Mill with a female Goldeneye (Dave Hutton).

Shustoke Res
100 Sand Martins and four Swallows (Pete Forbes).

Friday, 31 March 2017

Friday March 31st


Alvecote Pools
Warks: A Great White Egret has returned to Gilman's Pool (Roy Smith).

Coton Lakes
Six Blackcaps, 25 Sand Martins and a Goosander (Alan Dean).

Kingsbury WP
Two Goosanders, two Shelducks, eight Sand Martins, Willow Warbler and Willow Tit (Alan Dean). Along the canal from the Dog & Doublet the Greenland White-fronted Goose is still consorting with Canadas and is said to be "extremely tame" at present.

Ladywalk NR
At least four Willow Warblers, Green Sandpiper , two Little Ringed Plovers and six Lapwings (Pete Lichfield).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Two Great White Egrets were on Jubilee Wets this morning and two Willow Warblers by the river. Two Avocets , "many Sand Martins and a few Swallows" (RSPB).
Warks: Three Garganeys still at Fisher's Mill (Rob Williams, J & P Fincham). Swallow at farm.

Mmmm, Nice !
by Mark Priest

Thursday, 30 March 2017

Thursday March 30th


Ladywalk NR
Willow Warbler and two Blackcaps were fresh arrivals. An Egyptian Goose still present (Ken Bentley).

Middleton RSPB
Warks: A Firecrest was present in bramble by the canal at Fisher's Mill at around 10.00am (RSPB). The Great White Egret was at south meadow and three Garganeys were still on Fisher's Mill Pit as well as 20 Sand Martins (Karl Sargent, RSPB).

from Twitter - image by Bob Cooper

Staffs: A pair of Pintails were on North Pit (RSPB).

Shustoke Res
Blackcap singing was new in. Also 50 Sand Martins (Pete Forbes). 100 Sand Martins at 18.00hrs (Kevin Whiston).


Yesterday's wandering Great White Egret was also seen at the R Blythe bridge along the Shustoke Road at around 14.00hrs.(Pete Forbes)



Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Wednesday March 29th


Alvecote Pools
Swallow (Bob Duckhouse).

Ladywalk NR
85 Shovelers, two Oystercatchers and a brief Great White Egret, which flew downstream at 1415hrs after 15mins on site (Pete Lichfield). Great White Egret is still scarce in the county away from Middleton Lakes and it seems another one has passed me by.

by Pete Lichfield

Middleton RSPB
Warks: Three Blackcaps and many Chiffchaffs in the wood. Three Garganeys on Fisher's Mill - two drakes  (Steve Atkinson).
Staffs: 100 Sand Martins were present this morning, with three Little Ringed Plovers and three Redshanks (Steve Atkinson). Also, thanks to J & P Fincham.

Shustoke Res
Five Little Gulls (three adults, two first-summer) were present , generally feeding at c.200 feet, at 1500hrs at least (SMH et al). Six Little Gulls later (Steve Cawthray). Six singing Chiffchaffs around the reservoir.


Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Tuesday March 28th


The gentle easterly with poor visibility remained overnight but by mid-morning at least, the reported wind is south-west. Continued easterlies could have prompted a repeat of yesterday's minor Little Gull event across the Midlands and maybe the odd Avocet too.
Nearby sites saw good numbers of Sand Martins with the onset of rain at 1630hrs (eg. 70 at Marsh Lane NR).

Ladywalk NR
Curlew and two Oystercatchers still, along with good numbers of Shoveler (150). Wigeon and Teal numbers are falling fast (Pete Lichfield).

Middleton RSPB
Warks: Two Great White Egrets were in the heronry this evening (Steve Pick).

Shustoke Res
The Little Gull was not seen mid-morning but was present earlier (Steve Cawthray). Little Gulls in particular often flycatch much higher over the reservoir and drop down periodically. A Swallow and c.30 Sand Martins were present at 10.30am (Pete Forbes). At 1915hrs, 40 Sand Martins and two Goosanders (Kevin Whiston).

Monday, 27 March 2017

Monday March 27th

A cloudy morning, with poor visibility and a gentle breeze, mainly from the east, produced a small number of Little Gulls across many of the Midlands counties. First thing rather more Sand Martins than of late were evident.

Ladywalk NR
Curlew, Green Sandpiper, Little Ringed Plover, and c.180 Shoveler, of which 160 were males (Pete Lichfield).

by Pete Lichfield

Shustoke Res
A cloudy morning resulted in the best arrival so far of Sand Martins; c.60 present and the two Shelducks. Later, a Little Gull, Goosander and Little Ringed Plover and in the village, a Wheatear (Pete Forbes).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Two Egyptian Geese, five LRP, four Redshanks, Dunlin and White Wagtail (Birdforum).
Warks: Great White Egret, the pair of Garganeys still and Blackcap (Bob Duckhouse et al).



Sunday, 26 March 2017

Sunday March 26th


Ladywalk NR
A Siberian Chiffchaff singing near the old Hide D by the old fishing pools this morning. I'm guessing it's been in the area since the last records, earlier this year (Dave Hutton). Also today three Egyptian Geese, 150 Shoveler, 13 Goosanders, seven Shelducks and Curlew (Pete Lichfield).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Two Great White Egrets, two Egyptian Geese, four Redshanks and a Little Ringed Plover seems to be a bit of a clear out from the past few days (Karl Sargent, Steve Pick).

Shustoke Res
Two Shelducks this morning (Pete Forbes).

Saturday, 25 March 2017

Saturday March 25th


Ladywalk NR
Two Egyptian Geese which flew north, Curlew, eight Goosanders, four Shelducks. On the river a Common Sandpiper near Car Park (Kevin Whiston).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: The Garganey, at Fisher's Mill first thing, were on West Scrape (Birdguides). Also, despite no sign in the morning, Black-tailed Godwit (s) reported. A Great White Egret was still present (Mark Priest).

Warks Great White by Mark Priest

Warks: Two Great White Egrets left the heronry this morning. One was photographed by the south meadow. Pair of Garganeys still on Fisher's Mill (Tom Perrins). Blackcaps were heard by the farm and at south meadow (Geoff A Williams et al).

Friday, 24 March 2017

Friday March 24th


Ladywalk NR
Egyptian Goose and Curlew (Pete Lichfield).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Two Knot, four Black-tailed Godwits, two each of Ringed and Little Ringed Plovers, three Redshanks, pair of Garganey, Great White Egret and Egyptian Goose (Matthew Pollock et al)
Warks: Ten Snipe at Fisher's Mill (RSPB).

Thursday March 23rd


Ladywalk NR
Curlew, eight Goosanders, six Shelducks, 140 Shoveler, 100 Wigeon, 60 Tufted, Pochard, 17 Chiffchaffs, 120 Linnets (Steve Cawthray, Pete Sofley)

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Great White Egret, 14 Sand Martins.
Warks: At Fisher's Mill the pair of Garganeys still (Pete Forbes).

Another bright breezy day, another two Red Kites near the Valley. More to come.

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Wednesday March 22nd


Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Great White Egret, six Little Ringed Plovers, Dunlin and three Redshank(Steve Atkinson).
Warks: Fisher's Mill - The pair of Garganey reported late for yesterday were still present but again un-reported until late in the day (our thanks for digging out the news, Steve Atkinson).

Tuesday March 21st


Alvecote Pools
Warks: Four Jack Snipe at Mill Pool with 12 Common Snipe (Bob Duckhouse).

Kingsbury WP
Four Egyptian Geese flew in at Cliffe Pool and four Goldeneyes (Bob Duckhouse).

"Lovely" image by Bob Duckhouse



Ladywalk NR
LRP, Barnacle, seven Goosander, four Greylag and Otter (Pete Lichfield, Pete Sofley).

Excitement at Ladywalk today


Middleton RSPB
Staffs: On Jubilee Wetlands, three Avocet, two Ringed Plover, one Little Ringed Plover, two Redshank and a Dunlin (Steve Pick).
Warks: Great White Egret in the roost with a possible second bird also present (Steve Pick). On Fisher's Mill, the pair of Garganey were present, but elusive (Richard Eyres).

Shustoke Res
Two Sand Martins, 12 Fieldfares over, two pairs of Nuthatch, Siskins (Pete Forbes).

Wishaw
West Mids: Possibly the same as yesterday, a Wheatear again (Carl Hiles).




Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Monday March 20th


Church Pool Covert
A Blackcap, possibly a UK wintering bird alongside three Chiffchaffs (Pete Sofley).

Middleton RSPB
Warks: Two flocks of ten Sand Matins were seen at Fisher's Mill during the heavy rain this morning.

I sat in a hide for a few hours today hoping for some rain affected migrants but it was desperately uneventful.

LATE NEWS: On Saturday 18th, seven Egyptian Geese were reported at Tameside NR, Tamworth. Quite a large group hereabouts (Marion Parnell).

Monday, 20 March 2017

Sunday March 19th


Ladywalk NR
Curlew, Little Ringed Plover, three Oystercatchers, Redshank, Barnacle Goose, two Shelducks and six Pochards (Ben Eaton).

by Pete Lichfield

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: A pair of Garganeys, two Avocets, 2-7 Little Ringed Plovers, 2-6 Ringed Plovers, four Redshanks, three Oystercatchers (Arthur Bladon, Kevin Whiston et al).
Warks: Five Pochard and Goldeneye at Fisher's Mill. Great White Egret flew from the now favoured south meadow to Dosthill NR and then to roost at the heronry at 1803 hrs. 25 Little Egrets were roosting (Steve Pick).

The counts of ringed-type plovers differed between observers today so the above totals are best guesses.

Wishaw
West Mids: At last, a Wheatear. At top of Wiggins Hill Road (Dean Baker).


Ladywalk NR continue to fill their new Blog. Here is a link to Moths & Muntjacs


www.ladywalknature.wordpress.com/2017/03/19/mothing-muntjacs/


Saturday, 18 March 2017

Saturday March 18th


Coton Lakes
Twenty plus Sand Martins this morning (Dave Hutton).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Four Avocets were around later this morning after three initially. The pair of Garganey and now three Little Ringed Plover were present, as well as four Redshanks, three Ringed Plovers and a second-winter Yellow-legged Gull. Great White Egret seen flying south, possibly towards the south meadow. This evening, Great White Egret at Dosthill NR and Barn Owl on reserve (Steve Atkinson, Kay Donaghy, Dave Hutton, Steve Pick, Tom Perrins et al).
Warks: Egyptian Goose and ten Oystercatchers at Dosthill Lake and 13 Sand Martins just north of Fisher's Mill (Steve Pick).


by Steve Atkinson

A singing Willow Warbler slightly off patch was an excellent date for the Region today and yesterdays Swallow still looks to be a very good first arrival date in the context of other records, or lack of them, much further south. Another Wheatear arrival today, a few miles to the east of the valley. Brambling records appear to be on a slight increase with presumed migrants moving through. Ten were reported to me today at three sites, again just outside the valley. The feeders at Middleton Hall should get odd birds in the next week or two.


Friday, 17 March 2017

Friday March 17th


Kingsbury WP
The first Swallow in our area accompanied 32 Sand Martins at Bodymoor Heath Water today and 30 plus Sand Martins were still there later this evening. Little Ringed and Ringed Plover were in the area (Alan Dean, Matthew Pollock). Four Oystercatchers were also in the area.

Middleton RSPB
Warks: Great White Egret in the southern meadow. Also Jack Snipe, 12 Common Snipe and LRP there (RSPB)
Staffs: Three Avocets have returned  from their usual early spring forays around the Region and were back on Jubilee Wetlands with a drake and then a pair of Garganeys (drake seen yesterday. Thanks for report, Gill Lovatt). Also a Ruff (RSPB).

Shustoke Res
Three Sand Martins a Pochard and eight Redpolls (Pete Forbes).

It takes a colder, windier day to turn up a few birds after the warm, sunny weather and today was a pretty typical late-March day. First Swallow date is early again. In 2016, Shustoke Res and Brandon Marsh recorded one on March 24th and then no more until 27th, with singles at Alvecote, Brandon and RSPB Middleton.

Thursday, 16 March 2017

Thursday March 16th


Ladywalk NR
The Barnacle Goose, 130 Shoveler, nine Goosander (15 yesterday), a Red Kite over and last but least, a Ruddy Shelduck x Shelduck hybrid (Steve Cawthray et al).

Middleton RSPB
Warks: A Great White Egret roosted at 1833hrs, when 20 Little Egrets were also present (Steve Pick).

It seems as though Severn Trent are preparing to install Pay & Display at Shustoke Res. We shall see whether the irresponsible dog walkers ignore those notices too.

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Wednesday March 15th


Alvecote Pools
A Redshank.

Ladywalk NR
Two Ruffs a Dunlin and a Barnacle Goose signalled some movement at least (Pete Lichfield). Also a female Pintail and eight Shelducks.

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Late news: Little Ringed Plover still, four Redshanks, Egyptian Goose and a Stonechat (Birdforum).

Chiffchaffs are increasingly widespread today in all habitats. Sand Martins continue to arrive but in clear warm weather they are often only seen early or towards dusk.


Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Tuesday March 14th

Ladywalk NR
A brief visit to one hide recorded a drake Pintail, two Oystercatchers, c.six Goosanders and eight Sand Martins.

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: The first Little Ringed Plover of the spring was on Jubilee Wetlands and three Pochard remain at Dosthill NR (Geoff Williams).
Warks: A Great White Egret roosted at the heronry at 1825hrs (Julian Alen).

Monday, 13 March 2017

Monday March 13th


Bodymoor Heath Lane
The Greenland White-front was near the Water Park entrance (Julian Allen) There were no geese this morning.

Kingsbury WP
WEBS highlights: 135 Shoveler, five Goldeneye, 65 Tufted Duck. Very low numbers of other species.
I hear that at least one of the islands in Canal Pool has a number of rat burrows, which will affect the breeding Gulls, Terns and Oystercatchers etc. Hope they can be eradicated, they get everywhere.

Ladywalk NR
Three drake Pintails beautifuly captured below by Pete Lichfield. Ten Sand Martins over B Pools and ten Snipe (Ben Eaton).




Middleton RSPB
Warks: A Great White Egret was in the South Meadow again (DAD). At Fisher's Mill a female Bearded Tit was seen again (Steve Cawthray et al). No Avocets again.
Staffs: Adult Mediterranean Gull on Jubilee Wetlands. Dunlin and two Redshank on North Pit (Birdforum).

There was a Wheatear in south Warks today. I can't recall another yet this year. Wishaw ALERT.





Sunday, 12 March 2017

Sunday March 12th


Coton Lakes
WEBS highlights: 599 Tufted, 37 Pochard, 88 Wigeon, 143 Mute Swans, 48 Great Crested Grebe, 229 Coot, ten Chiffchaffs.

Ladywalk NR
WEBS highlights: Two Pintail, 95 Teal, 111 Shoveler. 34 Wigeon, 52 Tufted, six Goosanders, Water Rail, 27 Moorhens, two Kingfishers, thre Ravens and 12 Chiffchaffs in song (Ben or Pete).

Middleton RSPB
Warks: A Great White Egret flew in to the heronry around noon today (Per twitter).
Staffs: No sign of Avocets. Four Redshanks, seven Oystercatchers, 16 Shelducks, two Cetti's Warblers on Jubilee and Cetti's and 17 Lapwing North Pit, with Egyptian Goose nearby (Steve Atkinson).

Saturday, 11 March 2017

Saturday March 11th


Alvecote Pools
WEBS Count : 78 Tufted, 40 Wigeon, 14 Gadwall, 25 Teal, 68 Coot, 21 Moorhens, 19 GC Grebes, five Little Egrets (Bob Duckhouse). Egyptian Goose and Black Swan earlier this morning on Mill Pool (Roy Smith).

Bodymoor Heath Lane
Three Little Egrets on the flooded pool near canal bridge (Dave Emley ,BEM).
The Greenland White-front was in fields near KWP entrance again (John Galletly).

Ladywalk NR
Two Oystercatchers, four Shelducks, six Lapwings and Water Rail (Pete Lichfield).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Egyptian Goose still at North End (Tom Perrins). Ringed Plover, three Avocets, 14 Shelducks and three Oystercatchers on Jubilee Wetland (Karl Sargent). Great White Egret still on Jubilee too.
Warks: Two Great White Egrets were in the roost this evening, the second in at 18.20 hrs. Plus a Barn owl there (Julian Allen).

WEBS Counters early night please !!

Friday, 10 March 2017

Friday March 10th


Ladywalk NR
A pair of Pintails yesterday with just the female again today. Also two Pochard and four Shelducks (Pete Lichfield)
by Pete Lichfield
Middleton RSPB
Staffs: We now have three Avocets plus a Redshank on Jubilee Wetland. A Great White Egret was in reeds at Dosthill NR (Steve Atkinson).

Thursday, 9 March 2017

Thursday March 9th


Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Avocet, 11 Shelduck, seven Oystercatchers on Jubilee Wetlands
Warks: The usual Great White Egret was still in the south meadow.

Shustoke Res
33 Pochard, nine Goosander, five Wigeon, eight Gadwall and eight Mipits (Pete Forbes).

Whitacre Heath
A Barn Owl was seen near the village at 22.30 hrs (Ben Merryweather).

A few Brimstones and Small Torts and Peacock today, a lovely spring day, hence no Sand Martins (look up very high if you want to see one, they're up there).



Wednesday March 8th


Bodymoor Heath Lane, Marston
The Greenland White-front was in winter wheat again (Birdforum).

Middleton RSPB

Staffs: A Dunlin on Jubilee today.
Warks: Some of the Grey Herons have small young in the heronry and today, the Great White Egret chose to feed in the South Meadow (RSPB).

Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Tuesday March 7th


Ladywalk NR
Female Pintail still on B Pool and Marsh Tit (Pete Lichfield et al).

Monday, 6 March 2017

Monday March 6th


Ladywalk NR
A brief visit to one hide produced four Shelducks, two Oystercatchers and around 13 Cormorants on nests.

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: A single Avocet arrived back to Jubilee Wetlands on the same date as last year apparently. Also four Oystercatchers, two Stonechats (J & P Fincham & RSPB).
Warks: A Great White Egret roosted in the heronry at 1820 hrs. Starlings were up to 1,200 at the Silt Bed with two Sparrowhawks in attendance (Steve Pick).

Sunday, 5 March 2017

Sunday March 5th


Alvecote Pools
Staffs: Oystercatcher at The Pigs.
Warks: Great White Egret . Two Stonechats at Railway Pool plus Chiffchaff (Roy Smith).

Bodymoor Heath Lane
The geese were fewer in number until mid-afternoon by which time they were distant and facing away. Thus no sign of the Greenland White-front.

Shustoke Res
65 Pochard and 93 Tufted Duck on fishing pool (Dave Hutton).

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Saturday March 4th


Alvecote
Warks: Yesterdays flurry of excitement regarding Cattle Egrets subsided early today with three or four Little Egrets seen feeding with cattle near Teal Pool.

Bodymoor Heath Lane
The Greenland White-front was feeding on winter wheat opposite the Water Park with other geese today (Tom Perrins).

Ladywalk NR
Continuing the fine run of Stonechat passage, seven were seen either side of the river at north end. Also, Pintail, 217 Wigeon, 92 Shoveler, 12 Shelduck, eight Goosander, five Chiffchaffs, four Cetti's Warblers, four Siskin (Pete Sofley).

Some late news for February: 16th Merlin (DAD), Bittern on 20th, 24th and 28th. Jack Snipe on 21st.

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Seven Cetti's counted plus four Stonechats, four Oystercatchers and a Great White Egret (Steve Atkinson et al). Egyptian Goose still at north end (Tom Perrins).
Warks: Stonechat and Cetti's Warbler at Fisher's Mill (Steve Atkinson). The Great White Egret was in the heronry roost at 1809hrs plus at least 40 Little Egrets (Steven Pick).

958 Starlings by Steven Pick
At the Silt Pool the Starling roost was captured beautifully, as above, by Steven Pick.


Some of you were requesting details about Walter J Eley's funeral so a reminder that the service will be at Nuneaton Crematorium on Monday at 12 noon. Also, afterwards, a get together is now confirmed at Oakridge Golf Club near Ansley roundabout on the Arley Rd, CV10 9PH.

Friday, 3 March 2017

Friday February 3rd


Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Great White Egret, the first returning Redshank, five Oystercatchers and 90 Teal (RSPB).

Wishaw
West Mids: The regular Stonechat was on the muck heap (Carl Hiles).

by Carl Hiles

Thursday, 2 March 2017

Thursday March 2nd


Ladywalk NR
Slightly ahead of my prediction three Sand Martins flew through today, being five or so days ahead of recent annual arrival dates in the county. I will check this better when I can access my records (Pete Sofley).

Wishaw area
West Mids: 110 Golden Plovers were over fields behind Asda at Minworth (Carl Hiles).

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Wednesday March 1st


Ladywalk NR
Bittern again at B Pools and Main Pool. Also pair Pintail, eight Goosanders, six Pochard, a pair of Peregrines and four singing Chiffchaffs (Pete Sofley).

RSPB Middleton
Staffs: Great White Egret on Jubilee (John Osborne). Also four Oystercatchers and a really good 21 Shelducks (Steve Atkinson).
Warks: The best news for a while was the presence of at least one Bearded Tits on Fisher's Mill today. A female was seen at both ends of the reed bed after being flushed by a work party but Katie says there was definitely another bird too. Also a Dunlin flew over there (RSPB). A Stonechat and a Raven were in the same area (Steve Atkinson).

Whitacre Heath NR
Two male Stonechats from the Flash Hide (Paul Casey).

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Tuesday February 28th


Another blustery day with heavy rain midday and few birders out in the field.

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Great White Egrets were on Dosthill NR and also North Pit. On Jubilee a Ringed Plover and two Stonechats (Geoff Williams).
Warks: A Great White Egret roosted and ten Little Egrets were in the farm paddocks early evening. At the Silt Pool, 883 Starlings were counted (Steven Pick).

Wishaw
West Mids: Same Stonechat and Little Egret on Wishaw Lane, with the Egret now on the football pitch (Carl Hiles).

A Sand Martin was seen at Rutland Water today, one of four in the country over the past seven days. So maybe one in our area by the end of the week.

Monday, 27 February 2017

Monday February 27th


Middleton RSPB
Warks: A Bittern was seen flying from Fisher's Mill to the reed pool just to the north this morning (RSPB).

Wishaw
West Mids: A Little Egret along Wishaw Lane mid-afternoon (Carl Hiles).


Sunday, 26 February 2017

Sunday February 26th


Kingsbury WP
A Curlew, four Oystercatchers, 277 Shoveler, four Goldeneye and two Shelducks were on Cliffe and Otter Pools (Steve Cawthray).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Great White Egret, 13 Shelduck, 22 Lesser Black-backs and seven Stonechats on Jubilee Wetlands. Eight Goldeneye on Dosthill NR with five Goosanders on the river (Karl Sargent, Geoff Williams).
Warks: A Starling roost is beginning to assemble at the Silt Pool. At least 1,000 were present tonight and if past events are repeated we should see an increase to 10,000 in March (Steven Pick). These are migrants returning north and re-fuelling in our area.

Tamworth - Old Warwickshire Moor
Four Stonechats (three males) With thanks to Sean Allison & P Malys (?).

Whitacre Heath
A Stonechat present there too today (Katherine White).

Wishaw
West Mids: The regular Stonechat still at the muck pile (Carl Hiles).

Saturday, 25 February 2017

Saturday February 25th


Ladywalk NR
A drake Pintail, five Shelduck, three Goosander, 59 Shoveler, 72 Wigeon, 56 Gadwall and two Oystercatchers. Also a Willow Tit (Adam Archer).

RSPB Middleton
Staffs: Great White Egret on Jubilee Wetlands with two Little Egrets, 15 Shelduck, seven Oystercatchers, three Cetti's Warblers and four Stonechats. Chiffchaff at Dosthill NR and Egyptian Goose still north of North Pit with a Black Swan (Steve Atkinson).

I'm still hearing about new Stonechats arriving throughout various parts of Warks and West Mids at the moment. An early migrant ahead of the more obvious summer arrivals due in a week or two. I think there was at least one House Martin in the country yesterday; they get earlier each year.

Friday February 24th


Alvecote
Warks: The two Barnacle geese were still on Mill Pool today (Jon Morgan).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Great White Egret at Dosthill NR and a Chiffchaff by the river bridge (RSPB).
Warks: The heronry held 41 Little Egrets and two Great White Egrets this morning, the latter flying out at 0638hrs. Also two Ravens flew over (Steven Pick). At Dosthill Lake, Egyptian Goose and eight Oystercatchers (Tom Perrins).

Wishaw
West Mids: A Stonechat remains at the muck pile on Wishaw Lane (Carl Hiles).

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Tuesday February 21st


Kingsbury WP
Two Oystercatchers at Broomey Croft.

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: The Greenland White-front continues to wow at the north end but other species remain under-recorded. There were five Stonechats on site but no details as to where (per Birdforum).

The County Bird Recorders consult the information on the Blog in the absence of information sent in to them via traditional means, be that record cards or letters, phone calls, email/Twitter or more recently BTO Birdtrack. In the case of Middleton RSPB, we currently (unfortunately) have birds which fall into either of the two counties of Staffs and Warks (the reserve boundaries cover both counties with Warks having about two thirds of the reserve area). Unless the county is made known to us, records cannot be used for any purpose other than for the Blog and for RSPB internal planning; birds will be un-recordable and lost to the respective county databases. This seems a shame.

As well as the county recorders the RSPB too, appreciate knowledge of where birds are seen so may I make a plea for more information so that all parties can benefit. If anyone needs more information about the county boundaries give me a call or email/tweet. Thanks.

POSTSCRIPT: Thank you to Stu C who replied to my request for more info and we can now use his data. The five Stonechats were in Staffs.

..

Monday February 19th


Ladywalk NR
The Bittern re-appeared today at Hide B (Carl Seebode).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: The Greenland White-front and Egyptian Goose were still at the north end (Brian Stretch).
Yesterdays Black-headed Gull marked TENA was ringed as a nestling in Poland in June 2011. It has been seen at Kingsbury WP too and has also been seen near the ringing site again in June 2015. So coming up to its 6th birthday and seen 1380km from the ringing site. Thanks Steve Pick and quick work by the ringers in Poland.

Sunday, 19 February 2017

Sunday February 19th


Ladywalk NR
A Mealy (Common) Redpoll was present with singing Chiffchaff and Redwing (Steve Cawthray).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Greenland White-front and Egyptian Goose still, 50 yards south of the swing bridge. 14 Shelduck was a good count and seven Oystercatchers. Black-headed Gulls are arriving to breed and at least 2000 were present with two Great Black-backed Gulls. A ringed Black-head had a letttered ring - "TENA". A Great White Egret was at Dosthill NR and Willow Tit and two Chiffchaffs too. Two Stonechats were around Jubilee Wets.
Warks: A Great White Egret was sat in the heronry as early as 1730hrs and five Lesser Redpolls were in the woods
Thanks today to Steve Pick & Karl Sargent for their precise recording, also Geoff Williams on Birdforum and Phoenixbirder on Twitter.

It seems as though Waxwing can turn up pretty much anywhere at present. With the lack of Rowan berries now, I saw 34 eating tree buds by Halfords on Kingsbury Rd at Tyburn and nearby, 50 were at Castle Bromwich at the same time.

Saturday, 18 February 2017

Saturday February 18th


Middleton RSPB
Staffs: We could do with a fresh set of birds as it's getting a little predictable. The Greenland White-front is still present at the north end and two Great White Egrets were there yesterday 17th with one reported today, 18th. The Egyptian Goose was seen both days.
Yesterday, 17th, nine Goldeneye at Dosthill NR and two Oystercatchers at Dosthill Lake (Warks) Thanks to Steve Pick.
Warks: 32 Snipe dropped in to Fisher's Mill area.

Friday, 17 February 2017

Thursday February 16th


Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Great White Egret, Egyptian Goose, Greenland White-fronted Goose . Six Oystercatchers, four Ringed plovers and three Stonechats. I suspect the Oystercatchers may have been at Dosthill Lake, clarification for County recording purposes would be appreciated (Pete Forbes, Geoff Williams).


Tamworth
In the words of Birdguides, two or more Waxwings at Halford Street today.

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Wednesday February 15th


Middleton RSPB
Staffs: The Greenland White-front was at the north end with a Great White Egret nearby. Also a Stonechat. 500 Golden Plovers were over Jubilee Wetlands (Kevin Whiston et al).
Warks: A Great White Egret was at Fisher's Mill briefly before moving into Staffs.

Shustoke village
A Blackcap was in a garden on Castle Lane today.

Tamworth
32 Waxwings on Glascote Lane, near Wilnecote church (Twitter)

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Tuesday February 14th


Coton Lakes
The WEBS count today revealed a surprising 904 Tufted Ducks (almost the same as December). Perhaps there's life in the winter yet ! Also 134 Pochard, 124 Mute Swans, seven Shelduck and a Scaup (imm male on Lake 1B). Large numbers of Black-headed Gulls were packing together on Lakes 1A & B towards dusk, with a couple of thousand probably involved.

Middleton RSPB
Warks: A female Marsh Harrier was reported flying south over the carpark. If anyone can provide details it would be appreciated.
Staffs: Two Great White Egrets remain; one on North Pit and one at Dosthill NR (RSPB).

Monday, 13 February 2017

Monday 13th February

LADYWALK NR

The hard-working team at Ladywalk NR have designed a new Blog for the purposes of passing on news of the birds and wildlife there and also the ongoing management plans and updates on dates for work parties. The Blog is brand new and so extra content will be added as soon as possible.

Please read the Blog, linked below, as often as possible to show your support. Thanks.

www.ladywalknature.wordpress.com

I have also linked this from the blog.

Kingsbury WP
Today's WEBS count showed unsurprisingly that birds have greatly reduced since last month. The main species was very much Shoveler, with good numbers still at Cliffe and Otter Pool. 351 were present there and 25 were at the south end.
Other species of some note: Goldeneye 15, Great Crested Grebe 43, Gadwall (only) 25, Wigeon (only) 25, Tufted Duck 93, Oystercatcher 2 (Bodymoor Heath Water).

Ladywalk NR
Highlight today was an Egyptian Goose (yes, really). Also a pair of Mandarins on the river and two Oystercatchers (James Kenny, Pete Sofley).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Two Great White Egrets still present and a White-fronted Goose, maybe the same as last week, flew in from the south (Birdforum). WEBS highlights were 135 Shoveler, 14 Goldeneye, 195 Lapwing, 126 Coot, ten Shelduck and 13 Little Egrets. I will try and get these into a recordable format for the respective counties.

Shustoke Res
At dusk, ten Goosanders. No Gull roost apart from a few Black-headed.


WARNING
An escaped Red-breasted Meadowlark (aka Red-breasted Blackbird, I believe) on the Kingsbury edge of Dosthill may cause an ID problem some day soon. One was apparently photographed in a garden on Saturday.




Sunday, 12 February 2017

Sunday February 12th


Alvecote Pools
Staffs: A Great White Egret reported on the Anker west of The Pigs Pool (Birdguides). A Curlew flew south.
  
Ladywalk NR
The WEBS count was made in poor weather and a Black-tailed Godwit was a reward . It flew off early morning. Also, four Shelducks, 78 Teal, 57 Gadwall, 40 Shoveler and 35 Wigeon (Ben Eaton).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Two Great White Egrets and a Curlew (briefly)were on Jubilee Wetland (Geoff Williams).

Tamworth
c.30 Waxwings this afternoon by Mr Tyre on Campion Drive, Ketlebrook (Mark Priest).

Saturday, 11 February 2017

Saturday 11th February


Alvecote Pools
Seven Little Egrets but otherwise quiet (Bob Duckhouse).

Ladywalk NR
A female Mandarin and 1-2 Bitterns are still present but rather elusive.

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Some late news for Friday 10th: A Red Kite and two Stonechats were also present (Mark Priest).

Greenland White-front taken yesterday by Mark Priest
Staffs: Today at the reserve there is no sign of the Greenland White-front amongst 280 Greylags. Two Great White Egrets, three Oystercatchers and a Ringed Plover were present (Steve Atkinson & Tom Perrins).
Warks: Four Oystercatchers were around Dosthill Lake (Tom Perrins).







Friday, 10 February 2017

Friday February 10th


Middleton RSPB
Staffs: The Greenland White-front was best viewed from the canal towpath earlier today. Also a Great White Egret, Ringed Plover (Julian Allen)

Thursday, 9 February 2017

Thursday February 9th

Alvecote Pools
Warks: Two Whooper Swans reported today and no sign of the Great White Egret since February 3rd. That ties in with two being at RSPB Middleton also from 3rd (Roy Smith).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: The Greenland White-front was at the north end again. Also a Great White Egret, Dunlin, Ringed Plover (Julian Allen) and a Common Sandpiper (Michael Pittaway).
Warks: A Great White Egret roosted at the heronry at 1717hrs with at least 43 Little Egrets (Steven Pick).

Greenland White-front by Julian Allen


Stonechat today by Steve Atkinson 

Some late news for February 5th (my fault)
Kingsbury WP
Three Oystercatchers and the Black Swan at south end (P Gurney).

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Wednesday February 8th

All Duck counters on standby please for the coming weekend #WEBS  Thank you !

Ladywalk NR
98 Wigeon and a female Pintail (Bob Duckhouse).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: The White-fronted Goose was present and is now thought to be confirmed as being of the Greenland race. Two Great White Egrets plus 11 Shelduck and Ringed Plover.
Warks: An additional five Shelducks were on Middleton Pool (all Steve Atkinson et al).

The Greenland White-front will become the sixth county record, if accepted, following the last, a three week stay at Belvide Res from November 26th 2013.

Wishaw
West Mids: 325 Golden Plovers (Carl Hiles).

Tuesday, 7 February 2017

Tuesday February 7th


Ladywalk NR
A pair of Pintails this afternoon (Pete Lichfield). A Bittern was seen several times and as mobile best viewed from Riverwalk hide (Pete Sofley). Peregrine again on the pylons.

Monday February 6th


Kingsbury WP
On Cliffe and Otter Pools today, 490 Shoveler was a pretty high count (Steve Cawthray).

Ladywalk NR
A Peregrine was on the pylons . Down at the hides, no sign of Bittern up to 3pm at least.

Middleton RSPB
Warks: 44 Little Egrets left the roost this morning. The Great White Egret remained till after the Little Egrets and the observer left (Steven Pick).
Staffs: The White-fronted Goose remained on Jubilee Wetland and a Great White Egret, 300+ Lapwing, 260 Golden Plover, 11+ Shelduck.
A Red Kite flew south at 1045hrs (J & P Fincham). Any brighter weather just now seems to result in a Kite record in or around the Valley.

Wishaw
West Mids: 426 Golden Plovers were off Wishaw Lane (Carl Hiles)

Monday, 6 February 2017

Monday February 6th


Wally J Eley
As most will know Wally passed away over the Christmas/New Year period. There was a post mortem and now funeral arrangements have been released. This will be at Nuneaton Crematorium on Monday March 6th at 12 noon. (Address Eastboro Way, Nuneaton, CV11 6WZ) Donations can be made in lieu of flowers please and the beneficiary will be the RSPB at Middleton Lakes. The family will be very pleased to see you if possible.

Sunday February 5th


Alvecote Pools
Warks: A Pink-footed Goose was with the Canada Geese near Railway Pool (Roy Smith). Barn Owl nearby at dusk (Simon Rose).


Ladywalk NR
There was a Bittern close in to B Hide today. Often too close. This unusual shot by Dave Hutton.



Middleton RSPB
Staffs: A White-fronted Goose was with Greylags on Jubilee Wetlands (per Twitter). Two Oystercatchers and Ringed Plover still.
Warks: The Great White Egret roosted at the heronry at 1718hrs (Steven Pick).

Saturday February 4th


Ladywalk Nr
At least one Bittern but mobile. A drake Pintail was new in (Martin Weaver)

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: The first returning Ringed Plover with two Great White Egrets, 11 Shelduck, 13 Golden Plover and Oystercatcher (Steve Atkinson et al).

Friday, 3 February 2017

Friday February 3rd


Alvecote Pools
Warks: Two Barnacle Geese still and a Whooper x Mute Swan hybrid at Decoy Pool. A Great White Egret still.
Staffs: A Red Kite seen over Laundry Lane wood (Roy Smith).

Coton Lakes
A Red Kite flew south-west at 1235hrs and an adult Yellow-legged Gull roosted(Simon Rose)

Ladywalk NR
Two Bitterns were at B Hide again as was Mr Pete Lichfield. A Red Kite went over during the sunny part of the day; this was probably the Coton bird (Steve Cawthray).


by Pete Lichfield
Middleton RSPB
Staffs: Two Great White Egrets, Oystercatcher and 18 Golden Plovers (Steven Pick).
Warks: One of the two Great White Egrets ventured as far as Fisher's Mill (Steven Pick). Also the immature Scaup was there (as per Birdguides). At the heronry one Great White Egret roosted at 1702hrs with no others by 1735hrs (Steven Pick).

Thursday, 2 February 2017

Thursday February 2nd


Alvecote Pools
Warks: Great White Egret still (Roy Smith).

Ladywalk NR
Two Bitterns were at B Hide but not when the World Wetland Day guided walk visited (Julian Allen).

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Wednesday February 1st


Alvecote Pools
Warks: Great White Egret on Gilman's Pool. Also 20 Little Egrets, nine Goosanders and a Jack Snipe (Simon Rose).

Coton Lake
The Gull roost formed but few were present and they then dispersed. An adult Yellow-legged Gull was present for a time; most Black-headed Gulls moved off towards Shustoke Res (Alan Dean).

Hams Hall
The ringed 'Siberian' Chiffchaff was at the outfall for a short time. Alan Dean comments, "the call is okay.....the bird clearly lacks the evident olive and yellow livery of nominate Common Chiffchaff but the 'tan-brown and buff' hues of classic tristis are rather weakly expressed. It's a bird which requires a 'second look' to check that it meets the 'current criteria' ". Also four Common Chiffchaffs (Alan Dean).

Kingsbury WP
The regular Yellow-legged Gull at Bodymoor Heath Water has achieved February for the first time in many years http://deanar.org.uk/wmgulls/YlG/BHW/ylgstudies.htm (Alan Dean).

Ladywalk NR
Two Bitterns were present today (Pete Lichfield)
The image by Bob Duckhouse, below, seems on markings, to be the same bird as Monday, feeding below B Hide. Please approach the hide quietly and when in the hide do not speak loudly.

by Bob Duckhouse

A new Bittern, which we think arrived Sunday/Monday, toured the Reserve today and visited both main pools as well as the keyhole pool in front of A Hide. It found plenty of fish and the image below was well captured by Pete Lichfield.

by Pete Lichfield


Marston Fields
Green Sandpiper and 20 Wigeon (Alan Dean).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: An immature Scaup on Jubilee and three Stonechats (Geoff Williams). Also 450+ Golden Plover and at least 490 Lapwing. Great White Egret on the east side of Jubilee (RSPB et al).


World Wetlands Day - February 2nd

I am leading a party around Ladywalk NR tomorrow as part of this World event. Book through Tame Valley Wetlands Project  01675 470917     1.30 pm at the car park.     Limited availability

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Tuesday January 31st


Ladywalk NR
A Bittern was seen again at B Hide but was mobile and elusive and not seen after around 1300 hrs (Ben Eaton, Ken Bentley). Also another Oystercatcher after the one at Alvecote yesterday, Shelduck and five Pochard.

Middleton RSPB
Staffs:  Great White Egret was on Jubilee Wetlands with c.300 Golden Plovers (Martin Whalley).




Monday January 30th - Other Sightings


Alvecote Pools
Warks: An early Oystercatcher was near Railway Pool and the regular Great White Egret was on Gilman's Pool (Roy Smith).

Ladywalk NR
Ten Grey Herons, one Little Egret, female Pintail and seven Goosander (per Pete Sofley).

Middleton RSPB
Warks: A Great White Egret left the heronry roost at 0718hrs and flew south. Also 53 Little Egrets left the roost, with half staying to feed on the paddock between the wood and the farm; quite a sight I would imagine and pretty unique in the county (Steven Pick).

Monday, 30 January 2017

Monday January 30th - Bittern at Ladywalk NR


A Bittern showed well at Ladywalk NR today and Pete Lichfield was on hand to capture some fine images as shown below. It is thought that two birds are now present.






These photos are from B Hide and visitors should approach very quietly to avoid flushing the bird, which is close enough to see and hear your arrival. Please show permits and car stickers and if the hide becomes full please allow space for others if you have seen the bird well. Thank you.

Sunday January 29th

Alvecote Pools
Warks: Great White Egret still at Gilman's Pool and c.400 Lapwings nearby (Roy Smith).

Hams Hall
A 'Siberian' Chiffchaff (unringed) showing fulvescens traits was with eight Common Chiffchaffs around the outflow with Peregrine and Raven nearby. The classic tristis which was at the outflow has maybe moved on (Simon Rose).

by Simon Rose

Ladywalk
The Bittern showed from Riverwalk Hide at 1228hrs (Steven Pick)

Wishaw
West Mids: 64 Golden Plover were off Wishaw Lane (Dean Baker).

Saturday, 28 January 2017

Saturday January 28th


Alvecote Pools
Warks: Great White Egret and 17 Goosanders (Tom Perrins)

Ladywalk NR
Three Goosanders, four Shelducks, 50 Teal, two Little Egrets (Pete Lichfield). A freshly dead Goosander seen today, looks like a probable Peregrine kill (Pete Sofley).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: 270 Greylags and seven Shelducks (Karl Sargent).
Warks: 52 Little Egrets roosted at the heronry (Steven Pick).

Friday, 27 January 2017

Friday January 27th


Alvecote Pools
Warks: The two Barnacles are still with the Canadas and the Great White Egret was on Gilman's with 12 Little Egret and five Goosanders (Simon Rose).

Coton Lake
The roost held the adult Mediterranean Gull, adult Yellow-legged Gull, 86 Lesser Black-backed, 28 Herrings and 72 Common Gulls. Also Chiffchaff and a Water Rail. On the Lea Marston side: five Shelduck and a female Pintail (Alan Dean).

Hams Hall
A 'Siberian' Chiffchaff was heard and seen down from the Edison Rd bridge and four Chiffchaffs were seen, with one more on the Ladywalk entrance track (John Harris).

Kingsbury WP
Adult Yellow-legged Gull still, 215 Shoveler, two Goosanders and four Goldeneye (Alan Dean).


Thursday, 26 January 2017

Thursday January 26th


Alvecote Pools
Warks:  A Great White Egret was still on Gilman's Pool (Roy Smith).


Ladywalk NR

by Bob Duckhouse
Middleton RSPB
A Shoveler count today resulted in 203 on the whole site. 61 at Fisher's Mill and the remainder in Staffs (Katie Thorpe).

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Wednesday January 25th


Kingsbury WP
Due to unforseen circumstances my Duck Count (WEBS) was delayed until today. Numbers of water birds have fallen quickly though there has been some disturbance with chainsawing of trees continuing across the park. Main species were Canada Goose 145, Coot 297 (439), Mallard 92, Teal 33, Wigeon 74 (133), Shoveler 42, Gadwall 39 (194), Tufted Duck 145, Goldeneye 10, Little Egret 3 & Lapwing 41. The figures in brackets show the species where numbers have fallen the most since the last count on December 19th.

In the Logbook at Cliffe Pool there is a note of a Marsh Harrier for three out of the last four days at around 1530 hrs. It was apparently hunting over the islands for Snipe etc. Needless to say it didn't arrive again for me. I have seen a Hen Harrier (once) and numerous Sparrowhawks here attempting this modus operandi with the latter species being remarkably adept at stalling a slow flappy harrier-like flight.

Ladywalk NR
Some late news: The Bittern and at least one Siberian Chiffchaff present but no further details.

Further down the Tame there are some of those Waxwings. At Castle Vale there are still 50 at the junction of Farnborough Road and Blenheim Way.

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Tuesday January 24th


Ladywalk NR:  A Great White Egret was at B Pools on and off from 1330 - 1500hrs (John Franklin).