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Work Party Dates:

12th January 2019 – 2 pm

29th January 2019 – 9 a.m. to 3.30 p.m. Additional volunteers required for this additional work party which is indirectly c/o HS2 and through their contractor Balfour Beatty VINCI.

9th February 2019 – 2pm

13th February 2019 – 9 a.m. to 3.30 p.m. Additional volunteers required for this additional work party which is indirectly c/o HS2 and through their contractor Balfour Beatty VINCI.

9th March 2019 – 2 pm

6th April 2019 – 2 pm


3rd to 5th January records now included.

31st December 2018 – record updated – probable drake Common Scoter !

29th December 2018

20th January 2019

Overcast generally but dry; SE turning NE later

Records from Car Park Pool included the Red-breasted Merganser (fifth day) in the company of a single female Goosander, 14 Common Gulls, the adult Great Blackbacked Gull, five Little Egrets and 40 Cormorants, continuing the recent run of high counts.

There was a good range of species across the rest of the Reserve with three Ravens over, three Water Rails (two from the Causeway and one from River Hide), two Cetti’s Warblers (male singing by Causeway and a probable female calling by River Hide), Nuthatch on the Oak Hide feeder, both Treecreeper and Coal Tit singing by the Back Gate, Grey Wagtail and five Song Thrushes by the cattle feeder and the Chiffchaff still around the muck heap.

19th January 2019

Mainly overcast with light rain in the morning; sunny intervals later. Light SE

The regular Saturday morning count produced the following:

On the pools there were seven Mute Swans, 114 Greylag Geese, 61 Canada Geese, 350 Wigeon, 28 Gadwall, 250 Teal, 12 Mallard, 32 Shoveler, nine Tufted Duck, the female Redbreasted Merganser, five female Goosanders, 33 Cormorant, a single Grey Heron, four Little Egrets, 14 Moorhens, 39 Coot, 326 Lapwing, 117 Blackheaded Gulls, a single Common Gull, four Lesser Blackbacked Gulls and the adult Great Blackbacked Gull.

Other records were an adult Peregrine over, four Collared Doves on the Car Park feeders, singles of Grey Wagtail and Chiffchaff on the Old Road muck heap, 26 Redwing and 10 Fieldfare on the Tip Field and, finally, around the Car Park and the cattle feeder, 28 Meadow Pipits and ten Pied Wagtails.

18th January 2019

Early frost; overcast and cold with sunny intervals p.m. Light SE

Again, few records but the female Redbreasted Merganser put in an appearance for the third consecutive day, in the company of two female Goosanders this time. There was another good count of Little Egrets, with six present, and other records of note were Cetti’s Warbler, Water Rail, Common Gull (three) and the regular adult Great Blackbacked Gull.

17th January 2019

Bright, sunny and much colder than of late. Light NW

There were few records in the logbook, but the Cormorant count remained high, with 46 recorded, and the female Redbreasted Merganser was again present, for at least some of the day, with just a single accompanying female Goosander.

16th January 2019

Some showers, heavy around midday, otherwise overcast & mild, Light SW.

This seemed to be a day of two halves, with numbers of some species picking up significantly after the heavy rain around the middle of the day.

The morning sightings included three Ravens over, Water Rail from Oak Hide, a flock of some 60 Linnets in the Crop Field, Great Spotted Woodpecker and three Yellowhammers on the Car Park Feeders among others, Treecreeper and up to five Redwing along the Old Road. The muck heap continues to attract good numbers of Pied Wagtails, with ten present along with a single Meadow Pipit.

Later in the day on the pools, a Cormorant count of 47 was notable (2017 max was 57 in Jan), along with seven Little Egrets, 280 Wigeon, ten Pochard, 56 Shoveler, the female Redbreasted Merganser and three Goosander (m+2f), 19 Common Gulls (continuing the month’s run of double-digit counts) and the regular adult Great Blackbacked Gull. Other species across the Reserve included Nuthatch, Collared Dove and Siskin.

15th January 2019

Sunny intervals, continuing mild with light SW breeze.

Car Park Pool held up to four Little Egrets, two Shelduck and the Greater Blackbacked Gull, but no record of the Merganser today and no more than two Goosanders. Other records included three Common Gulls on Railway Pool, a Green Woodpecker along the Railway Embankment, two Water Rails from the North Causeway Hide and, finally, two Collared Doves on the Car Park Feeders mid-morning were of note.

14th January 2019

Sunny intervals, continuing mild with light NW breeze

The Car Park feeder was busy, as usual, with Yellowhammer (three), Great Spotted Woodpecker (two), Reed Bunting, Chaffinch, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Longtailed Tit, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Dunnock, Reed Bunting, Robin, Blackbird, Jackdaw, Pheasant and, last but not least, Moorhen, all present at various times.

The Redbreasted Merganser was again on Car Park Pool in the company of just three Goosanders (two females) this time. Other species included singles of both Great Crested and Little Grebe, three Little Egrets, Common Gull (two) and the regular Great Blackbacked Gull, with a Kingfisher also putting in an appearance.

Elsewhere on site were ten Pied Wagtails, four Meadow Pipits and four Song Thrushes, the latter on the Tip Field

13th January 2019

Sunny intervals, breezy but very mild, temperatures up to 12 degrees.

Not a great deal of change in species: the first-winter Red-breasted Merganser was joined by six Goosanders (five females and a male). On the pool margins there were two Little Egrets, the adult Greater Black-backed Gull and 12 Common Gulls. The Chiffchaff was again around the Old Road muck heap and, in the tip field, 18 Pied Wagtails fed amongst the Sheep. Four Bullfinches (three males and a female) were in the hedge by the Sheep field and other bits and pieces included four Song Thrushes, the Grey Wagtail on the muck heap, 180 mixed Corvids on the flood plain (of which about 75% were Jackdaws) and 17 Moorhen.

12th January 2019

Windy and mostly overcast and mild.

The more noteworthy birds today included the long-staying Chiffchaff around the Old Road muck heap where a Grey Wagtail was also seen; on the tip field there were 75 Redwings, ten Fieldfares, 50 Starlings and 24 Meadow Pipits.

Other counts today were as follows: two Mute Swans, 11 Greylags, 119 Canadas, 295 Wigeon, 22 Gadwall, 195 Teal, 16 Mallard, 56 Shoveler, four Pochard, 19 Tufted, a first-winter Red-breasted Merganser, 14 Goosanders (five males and nine females), 47 Cormorants, three Herons, five Little Egrets, nine Moorhen, 24 Coot, 320 Lapwings, 16 Snipe, 90 Black-headed Gulls, 23 Common Gulls, two Lesser Black-backed Gulls and the adult Greater Black-backed Gull.

11th January 2019

Overcast, light north-westerly wind.

There were at least ten Meadow Pipits in the tip field this morning and 70 Chaffinches on the edge of the crop field in the afternoon.

Two Ravens went over, there were a pair of Bullfinches in the back gate copse, both Woodpeckers were seen and the first-winter Red-breasted Merganser came in at about mid-day with five Goosanders. There were also 250 Lapwing.

10th January 2019

Light rain, cool and overcast.

The first-winter Red-breasted Merganser continues to provide the main highlight. Today it was joined by seven Goosanders, of which three were males. The adult Greater Black-backed Gull was again on site with just two Common Gulls. A Water Rail was, as usual, in one of the causeway channels. 55 Cormorants and two Little Egrets were recorded and there were eight Siskins in the alders by the back gate.

9th January 2019

Sunny intervals, some high cloud, cool, light northerly wind.

Early on there was just a Great Crested Grebe and a drake Pochard on Car Park Pool with the usual Wigeon, Teal and other Ducks. 11 Goldfinches were feeding on the ground around the record box, there was a single Little Egret on Car Park Pool and in the crop field just a handful of Chaffinches, along with three Yellowhammers and five Pheasants.

8th January 2018

Sunny, light northerly wind

Eight Pied Wagtails and a Grey Wagtail fed on the muck heap along the Old Road this morning and there were two male Bullfinches nearby. A single Fieldfare fed on the flood plain, a Raven went over and there were a further two male Bullfinches on the railway embankment.

Just after lunch the female Red-breasted Merganser appeared with five Goosanders and there were also three Little Egrets. A Nuthatch visited the Oak Hide feeder.

7th January 2018

Mostly overcast.

There were 20 Pied Wagtails this morning feeding around the cattle feeder in the field just north of Car Park Pool.

On Car Park Pool the Red-breasted Merganser was present, along with six Common Gulls, two Lesser Black-backed Gulls, the adult Greater Black-backed Gull, one Little Egret, two Little Grebes, four Pochard and three Goosander.

Song Thrush, Kingfisher and Water Rail showed from the Causeway Hide, there were six Snipe on Railway Pool, two Kestrels around the orchid field and a busy car park feeder included, amongst other things, 11 Goldfinches, five Chaffinches, four Reed Buntings, three Greenfinches, 20 Jackdaws, a Magpie and a male Great Spotted Woodpecker.

Finally there was a Bullfinch on the railway embankment.

6th January 2018


The Red-breasted Merganser continues to frequent the Reserve and today it was in the company of eight Goosanders (two males and six females). There were also 80 Shoveler, six Pochard, eight Common Gulls, the adult Greater Black-backed Gull whilst, in the north causeway screen, up to three Water Rails, Kingfisher, Cetti’s Warbler, Little Grebe and Little Egret were all on show.

Both Nuthatch and Treecreeper were seen in the back gate copse, whilst in the crop field there were at least four Yellowhammers. A Grey Wagtail fed in front of Oak Hide and, later in the day, there were three Little Egrets on the Dragonfly Pool and a pair of Bullfinches nearby.

5th January 2019

The less usual birds today included a Jack Snipe at the Dragonfly Pond, a Chiffchaff along the central streamline from River Hide, two Ravens over, 18 Redwing in the tip field, eight Yellowhammers in the crop field Oaks, a Grey Wagtail on the muck heap and a Kingfisher from the north causeway screen. Later in the afternoon, 14 Pied Wagtails were feeding on the muck heap and 30 Siskins were feeding in the Alders in the back gate area.

Other counts today were as follows: nine Mute Swans, 202 Greylags, 84 Canadas, two Farmyard Geese, 317 Wigeon, 22 Gadwall, 268 Teal, 19 Mallard, 103 Shoveler, three Pochard, 16 Tufted Duck, the first-winter female Red-breasted Merganser, six Goosanders, 50 Cormorants, three Little Egrets, three Herons, one Little Grebe, 16 Moorhen, 13 Coot, a Water Rail (causeway), 236 Lapwing, eight Snipe, 126 Black-headed Gulls and two Lesser Black-backed Gulls.

A pair of Bullfinches were feeding in the hedge by the gate towards the end of the day and a Song Thrush was in song by the back gate.

4th January 2019

Cold, frosty and sunny.

The female Red-breasted Merganser was on site at 8 am and was therefore presumed to have roosted but it had gone by 9 am, only to return again around lunchtime, along with five Goosanders.

The crop field held 50 Chaffinches, two each of Reed Bunting, Yellowhammer and Stock Dove and at least three Pheasants.

A pair of calling adult Greater Black-backed Gulls flew around Car Park Pool at 9 am before flying off and there were also three Little Egrets and 12 Tufted Ducks on Car Park Pool.

3rd January 2019

The female Red-breasted Merganser now has a regular pattern of arriving in the late morning and spending much of the afternoon on site. It may also roost but has wandered widely around the immediate area, having been seen at Packwood, Earlswood and Olton Mere. It is undoubtedly a first-winter bird with some debate as to whether it is a female or a yet to moult, male. It was joined by a single Goosander in the afternoon.

Other birds today of note included a flock of Chaffinches along the Old Road totalling 50 with 20 Greenfinches and six Greenfinches nearby. The now regular Grey Wagtail was on the muck heap, north of the car park along the Old Road, along with ten Pied Wagtails. There was also a Chiffchaff there and a probable second bird along the concrete road where there were at least 30 Siskins in the Alders there and a drumming Great Spotted Woodpecker. The latter species also visited the Oak Hide feeder along with Nuthatch.

2nd January 2019

Cold and frosty start, high cloud, cool light northerly wind.

At 8.30 am 13 Yellowhammers flew into the trees by the cottages where there were, at that stage, 15 Chaffinches all apparently feeding on the edge of the crop field. The Chaffinch flock had increased to at least 20 by lunchtime.

The car park feeder was being used by at least 15 Goldfinches and four Greenfinches. 11 Redwings were in the trees by the cottages at 8.15, 12 Rooks went over (all with full crops) and there were eight Meadow Pipits on the Car Park Pool islands with either those or a separate group of 11 in the tip field at lunchtime. Two Water Rails were calling to each other in the north causeway bay.

The female Red-breasted Merganser arrived at 12.30 and was joined a little later by a male Goosander. The adult Greater Black-backed Gull was present during the late morning before flying off just before 2 pm and there were at least five Common Gulls there at the same time.

A Grey Wagtail was again by the muck heap on the Old Road and there were 30 Starlings commuting between the car park feeder and the Oaks by the hide.

1st January 2019

Overcast start, clearing to sunny pm, remaining still.

The female Red-breasted Merganser came in again just after mid-day. The Chiffchaff was again by the Old Road muck heap whilst, in the tip field, there were 19 Meadow Pipits and ten Pied Wagtails.

Kingfisher and Water Rail were in the north causeway bay and the two Cetti’s Warblers today were either side of Oak Hide.

Other bits and pieces included a Raven over, two Siskins in the back gate copse, three Nuthatch (two back gate copse and a third one at Oak Hide), five Herring Gulls over, four Pochard, a Little Egret, eight Snipe and three Collared Doves.