A record of wildlife in my garden and various trips to the Warwickshire countryside and occasionally further afield.
"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
Tuesday, 12 November 2013
Local Birding, Rare Victorian Pillar Box and Autumn in the Garden
Marsh Lane NR
I returned to Marsh Lane NR on Thursday last week. There hadn't been any further sightings of the Dusky Warbler for a few days. I like to think its feeding undetected somewhere on the reserve or nearby rather than it having met an untimely end.
The Reedbed Pool can be seen from a viewing screen as you walk along the path to Oak Hide
I walked further into the Reserve on this visit towards Railway Copse and the Railway Hide. A Sparrowhawk was hunting birds along the hedgerow in the crop field.
View over Railway Pool from Railway Hide - you can see Oak Hide in the distance. The usual species were on the pool Coot, Grey Heron, Lapwing, Shoveler, Swans, Black-headed Gulls, Mallard, Canada and Greylage Geese and Moorhens.
The Black Swan was a lot closer to the hide this time.
Whenever I've seen it, its been in the company of a pair of Mute Swans.
There's a good crop of berries in the hedgerows around the reserve.
I've added a few new species to the list I've recently started for this reserve - Sparrowhawk, Reed Bunting (flying into reeds in the small pool by the car park), Greenfinch and Robin on the feeders and Gadwall on Car Park Pool which brings the list up to 40 bird species.
Victorian Pillar Box
This morning I had to go to Dickens Heath and I stopped off in Dog Kennel Lane to take some photos of a rare Victorian fluted Pillar Box. This type of post box has a a flattened conical top and initially had a vertical slit. In 1857 the posting aperture was changed from vertical to horizontal. Only four of these fluted pillar boxes are still in use today. Three in Malvern and this one in Shirley.
Huge thanks to Rose - who first alerted me to this rare post box. I've driven past it dozens of times without spotting it!
I've not had chance (mainly due to overnight rain still) to put out the moth trap for a few weeks although it now looks dry (though colder) for the rest of the week so hopefully I'll be putting it out and hoping for a December moth :)
Autumn colours are now showing in the garden.
I'm really pleased with how well this acer is doing - now planted behind the rockery. It languished for years in a pot and last year I really did think I had lost it as I forgot to water it during a period of drought in the summer but its thriving now :)
There are still a few flowers - Cosmos, Cornflower, Primulas,Michaelmas Daisy, Verbena bonariensis and this dahlia.
Although up to a dozen Blackbirds descended on the garden during the last week to scoff Rowan, Whitebeam and Pyracantha berries, there are still plenty left.
I've seen Fieldfares in trees near to our garden but they rarely visit the garden to feed until the weather gets really cold - still hoping there will be a few berries left when they do eventually visit and I will always live in hope of a Waxwing visit :)
Welcome to my blog. I have been interested in natural history from an early age and we have tried to create a garden attractive to wildlife. I also enjoy reading, photography, collecting fossils, visiting historic buildings and gardens and supporting Aston Villa. Please feel free to leave a comment and, if you would like to email me, my email address is ciraggedrobinsATgmail.com - remember to replace AT with @. Thank you for visiting.