A visit to RSPB Sandwell Valley was in all honesty a let down. For starters the main gate was locked which wasn't a problem as we parked on the road instead of the relative safety of the reserve, then reaching the path to the hide found the gates locked so no hide viewing today! A disappointment as I would have thought arrangements could have been made to open the reserve fully to accommodate folk over the Festive Season. I shall email RSPB Sandwell and the RSPB Headquarters and tell them of my disappointment and disgust at the closure of the hide. I spoke to several birders who like me were surprised to see the 'Lock Out'!
However it was good to see that the feeder by the new Visitor Centre building works had been replenished and that Blue, Great and Marsh Tit were frequent visitors to the feeder along with at least 4 male Bullfinch and almost as many females at times!
Two fairly regular visitors to my garden the last few weeks have been a Grey Heron and the more regular visitor of the two being a splendid looking Fox!
The Heron keeps trying to spot a way to get to the fish in the pond, I am winning that battle!
The Fox, which I believe is a Vixen, is such a delight to see in my garden. On Sunday the Fox hung around for 10-15minutes in the garden, this being the longest duration I have watched it, I expect the sharp frost and freezing fog had given it an appetite. The Fox has some ailment to it's back left leg. It almost looks as though it has lost a foot on that leg and very often holds the leg up when stood still but uses it ok when walking. It is not in any distress and looks very healthy. It is more wary of the Magpies than the Magpies are of the Fox.
It's behind you!! ;-)
Sunshine today so an afternoon visit to Brake Mill Pools was enjoyed. No Goosanders here today, on a quick visit on Sunday I saw 7 female and 3 males! Two pairs of Tufted Ducks today compared to a lone male on Sunday was good to see.
I spoke to a gentleman who was sporting binoculars, I usually only see dog walkers, cyclists and joggers here, he told me he had just seen a Water Rail at the far end of the pool! I lingered on my return to the pool but no luck, however I will keep checking now that I know one has been sighted.
I placed bird seed on several posts and was delighted to see this smart looking Robin enjoying the spoils.
The vegetation reflections in the water looked splendid in the sunshine, with the Ducks being an added bonus in the pics!