Sunday, 24 February 2013

February walks.

Brake Mill Pool....8th.

A sunny day on the 8th so I had a quick wander around at Brake Mill Pool. Goosander have been seen several times recently in varying numbers on the pool, also a couple of Little Grebe. Two  male Tufted Duck looked a delight in the sunshine, no females about though, no doubt  females will be in evidence soon.  Large numbers of Black-headed Gulls have congregated on the water and in surrounding fields, also Corvids and Woodpigeons in good numbers seen in the fields.
A sad sight was realising what the 3 Cygnets had been gathered together for, it was a piece of plastic! I am not sure whether they were playing with the plastic or trying to eat it! Fortunately they left it alone when a couple came along and stopped to talk to me, no doubt the Cygnets thought they had food for them. Nothing could be done to retrieve the piece/bag of plastic as it had seemingly sunk in the water, no doubt to resurface in the future time and time again! The Cygnets will be getting the old 'heave ho' from their parents as the breeding season nears so hopefully they will find water devoid of any plastics!

Brake Mill Pool....16th.
A foggy morning as the photo of the sheep will testify. Plenty of Gulls were on the water, Mallards kept a low profile and 9 Goosanders were seen at the far end of the pool. A Kestrel gave me the run around as it flew further and further along a telephone wire as we walked up the bridleway! At the end of the circular walk the sun appeared....oh well it was still an enjoyable walk albeit it being  foggy, cold and muddy!

Bunkers Hill Wood....14th.

Dodging the humongous puddles along this bridleway seems to be the norm this winter, however the rainbow was a pleasing sight and took my mind off the puddles!

Kestrel, Buzzard x2, Coal, Great & Blue Tit, Robin, Goldfinch, Chaffinch, Mistle Thrush x2 and a delightful Treecreeper were seen on what is always a pleasant walk.

Mary Stevens Park....15th

A lovely sunny day had me visiting a local park for fresh air and exercise, well I walked the lake twice. :-) Goosander x 5, a pair of Tufted Duck , Canada Geese, Moorhen, Coot, Muscovy Duck and a large number of Black-headed Gulls on the water. They were all being well fed by the park visitors!

Dowles Brook....17th

A long overdue visit to Dowles Brook on a relatively warm (ish) day was enjoyed though a sighting of Dipper, Hawfinch and L S Woodpecker would have been a real treat but not to be today! However Great and Blue Tit  were seen frequently on the walk, especially so Blue Tits! Coal Tit, Marsh Tit, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Robin, Blackbird, House Sparrow, Treecreeper, Buzzard and Raven x2 were still a delight to see.

Whittington...Staffordshire/Stourbridge, West Midlands border....19th.

A sunny afternoon called for a walk and well worthwhile it was too! Walking by paddocks and arable land makes a nice change from woodlands. I  was more than pleased that I chose this walk . Skylarks were singing beautifully and visible at times, Goldfinch, Chaffinch and Robin were feeding in the hedgerows, a Yellowhammer sang from the top of a tree, a 'pale form' Buzzard was heard and seen often but the undoubted highlights were the Little Owl that was perched in a tree and enjoying the sunshine and a Stonechat pair that were checking me out as I checked them out! Magic!! A day like today once a week would suit me fine!


  1. A few nice walks there! Well done with the Stonechats, never even realised they were in the Whittington area!

  2. A great round up of recent walks Pam. Superb series of shpots of the Mute Swans (fascinating behaviour)

  3. Thanks Craig! We had a juvenile Stonechat in the same area in June 2009. I will keep an eye on this area in the coming months.

  4. Thanks Jason! Fascinating indeed with the Swans though I wish I could have retrieved the offending 'toy' they were seemingly playing with from the water.

  5. I enjoyed reading about your February walks Pam!
    I do hope that the cygnets won't be tempted by that plastic!
    That's a super shot of the foggy sheep.....very evocative!
    Stonechats are always a thrill to see aren't they....super images as well,well done!
    I can't believe that we'll soon be on the look out for Martins and Swallows,it's sooooo cold still!!

  6. Some very nice walks there Pam and you were well rewarded for braving the Winter weather with lots of interest. You managed some lovely photos as well. I too would have been very concerned about the Cygnets and the plastic, one feels so helpless in those circumstances.

    I love the atmospheric looking sheep photo :-) As for the walk with the owl and the Stonechats....that's just plain greedy....I would be happy with just one of those ;-) Seriously though, you must have been very pleased with those sightings! I don't see Stonechats locally so I am very envious, I love the photo on the post!

    Re. Bourton, I definitely wouldn't recommend visiting at peak times in Summer such as bank or school holidays, it can be packed to the gunnels!

  7. Thanks for your comments Ruth!

    Hopefully the grey days we are having this week will give way to some sunshine and a bit of warmth! It will be lovely to see the Hirundines back with us! I picture in my mind the Swallows flying low over the fields at Brake Mill Pool, it will be nice when it is a reality!

  8. Thanks for your comments Jan!

    The Little Owl and Stonechats were totally unexpected, always nice when the unexpected happens isn't it!

    I love that phrase Jan 'packed to the gunnels'! I will heed your warning.;-)