Sunday, 6 January 2013

Brake Lane and a Little Drummer Boy....05/01/2013

No wind, no rain, mild and slightly overcast was the weather this morning...perfect weather for the circular walk starting at Brake lane, Bridleway, Pool and back to the start!
It was lovely to hear the birds calling and especially Robins in song of which I reckon I encountered at least 5 individuals on the walk. A Yellowhammer was giving it some wellie whilst perched on a wire though a lone Corn Bunting not far away was silent. A Sparrowhawk flew in low over the fields which flushed the Woodpigeons that had been feeding in the fields, the Corvids did not seem bothered by the Sparrowhawks presence. A couple of Mistle Thrush gave there presence away with their high pitched rattle call and to me the worst bird call ever emanated from a Jay as it flew amongst  the tall trees in a garden, a colourful bird but such a grating call! I saw and heard several noisy Jays on the walk.

The Bridleway was very muddy, it was difficult to step out of the mud at times, luckily I managed to hang on to my wellies! I had hoped for Redpoll and Siskin alongside the wooded area as there are plenty of Alder and Pine trees here, but no luck today! As I neared the end of the bridleway I watched a Great Spotted Woodpecker as it made it's way along a branch in search of insects, the silence was broken by the sound of drumming a distance away!! My first of the year GSW drumming, it seems early but I suppose they have territory to claim now! A Treecreeper flew closely past me as I watched the Woodpecker, I must have been very! I managed a quick photo of it before it disappeared behind a tree trunk!

On the Pool were a good number of Black-headed Gulls, I checked for anything different but no luck! I had seen a male Goosander and two Little Grebes on the pool on Thursday afternoon (3rd) but just one Little Grebe seen today, I expect the other one was there somewhere lurking in the depths of the pool out of sight.
I thoroughly enjoyed my 3 hour walk/linger today, it was good to do the whole of the walk for a change and in decent weather. I saw 29 species of which I was pleased with for this area and given the time of year. Highlight species were Yellowhammer, Wren, Corn Bunting, Goldfinch, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Coal Tit, Long-tailed Tit, Goldcrest,  Treecreeper, Dunnock, Robin, Buzzard and Sparrowhawk.

Mud, Mud, Glorious Mud!


  1. Wasn't it nice to be able to get out in some sunshine Pam!
    Your pics are splendid,the video too.....such a sweet song!
    We heard our first drumming GSW too on Saturday,all very uplifting int it....tho I can't help but think we've got the worse of the winter to come yet!!
    (I'm still having upload problems on my blog...a "known issue" apparently!!)

  2. It was good to be out in dry and good sunny weather Ruth! I agree with you that we have the worst to come yet, I admit to wanting to see some snow but only a!
    Hope you get your blog sorted soon and many thanks for your kind comments.

  3. Hi Pam, I inadvertently missed commenting on your previous post! It was lovely to see the photo of the Nuthatch and to read of your experience with the child in the hide. I am a firm believer that it is never too soon to spark a child's lifelong interest in Nature. I remember with such pleasure the walks my Mother would take my brother and myself on, when we were very little, looking for the first wild flowers of the year and I still have my little Observers Book of British Birds with all my sightings carefully underlined in the index :-) i must have been very young when I was given that but it is small things like that which have an impact which will hopefully remain for life.

    Anyway, I enjoyed both posts and you managed some fine photos, I particularly enjoyed the Treecreeper. Video too! I loved the cheery little Robin. I have noticed more bird song in the garden recently especially towards dusk so they are obviously staking out their territory :-)

  4. Hi Jan, thank you for all of your comments.
    I am pleased to have brought some happy memories back for you, I hope the young girl in the hide remembers in years to come her first Nuthatch sighting.
    Lovely to hear the bird song once again and with a slightly more upbeat tempo as Spring beckons!

  5. I've not heard a Great spotted Woodpecker drumming yet this year...any day now!

    Nice to hear that you still have Corn Buntings in the Brake lane area. What's the most you have seen this winter Pam?

  6. The Corn Bunting I saw at the weekend was the only one this winter Jason, though I must admit to not walking this area for a while due to the weather conditions! The bridleway can get really boggy so when I am on my own I steer clear! I will try and check out Brake Lane more often. I had a late afternoon visit to Brake Mill Pool yesterday, not a Gull to be seen on the water but the Jackdaws put on a nice roosting display in the trees alongside the railway track.