"To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And eternity in an hour."

From "Auguries of Innocence"

by William Blake

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

Redwings Return

I spent a couple of hours at Brandon Marsh Nature Reserve, Warwickshire yesterday afternoon. I managed to see 33 species during that time. There were high numbers of lapwings and black-headed gulls on the pools and islands together with coots, moorhen, mallard, shoveler, teal, mute swan, cormorants, tufted duck, pochard, gadwall, great crested grebe, snipe, grey heron and wigeon. There were plenty of feral pigeons, great and coal tits and chaffinches on the feeders at the visitor centre. As I walked through woodland grassland I also saw green woodpeckers, mapgies, robins, blackbirds, collared dove, carrion crows, a jay and blue and long-tailed tits. As I left the Carlton Hide I saw a pheasant (I don't often see these at Brandon Marsh) flying over a nearby field.

As I walked through trees between Goose and Central Marsh pools I was really pleased to see a treecreeper workings its way up the trunk of a hawthorn bush. The real highlight of the afternoon though was a small flocks of redwings which flew over the path behind Grebe pool. My first sighting this autumn and it was great to hear their calls again. I was also really pleased to see a female blackcap feeding on elder berries at the side of the path near the visitor centre.

Path from Visitor Centre onto the reserve

Horsetail Glade

Goose Pool

There were plenty of flowers still around

It was strange to see a pot marigold (calendula) near Carlton Hide

Leaves on some of the trees have already changed colour and there were plenty of seedheads and berries around together with some fungi.

A perfect way to spend an afternoon


Anonymous said...

Great set of photos Caroline.
It always a good feeling when you see/hear your first of any returning species, whether they be spring/summer or autumn/winter species.

Ragged Robin said...

Thanks for your kind comment about the photos Dean. I am hoping for a fieldfare next!

Pete said...

ah brandon had a nice morning there once! thanks for the memories!

Ragged Robin said...

Its a great reserve Pete but I am totally biaised!

Tricia said...

Definitely signs of autumn now as your pictures depict. How wonderful to see the Redwings again. I've been hoping for visits to my Holly Tree but suspect the Wood Pigeons will have stripped it of berries before the Redwings arrive! Brandon looks a great place to visit.

Ragged Robin said...

We have had redwings on our holly bushes in the past but these days there are far more wood pigeons around stripping our berries too.