"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

Monday, 19 November 2018

Brueton Park Pool

A week or so ago I did some family chauffeuring to Solihull and had an hour to wait so decided to take my camera and visit the pool at Brueton Park where the birds being used to people are relatively "tame" and you can get close views.

I do like Brueton Park and would visit far more regularly if it was closer to home. It is right by the town centre but when you do some of the walks, for example the walk I try and do each May through woods and along the course of the River Blythe, you could be in the countryside. The park consists of more formal and informal areas and there is mature woodland, a tree trail, a local nature reserve where this May we saw cowslips and the pool I visited today.

The rain thankfully stopped as I arrived but it was dull and gloomy and not ideal for taking photos.

Autumnal tints.

A poor photo of a grey squirrel - there were several around collecting nuts and burying them - they were constantly moving so I just could not get a decent picture.

Drake Mallard on the pool

Moorhen - love the feet!!

Black-headed Gulls and a female Mallard.


A Grey Heron - a juvenile I think - located on the far side of the pool.

A couple arrived with a toddler to feed the birds who then came up onto the bank. The little boy was so enjoying himself and the birds - it was lovely to see. I was that busy trying, without much success!, to get photos that I didn't notice what they were feeding the birds but looking at the pictures I think it was hopefully duck food. Warwickshire Wildlife Trust manages an area of the park quite close to the pool and has a visitor centre so perhaps they sell food there?

Black-headed Gulls

I think the gulls with the yellowy and black bills (rather than red and black) are in First Winter plumage - but please feel free to correct me. My gull id skills are limited - the thought of all those different plumages depending on age somewhat put me off!

Ducks mainly mallard with a few hybrids thrown in!


David Gascoigne said...

If you have an hour to kill in town it looks like a great spot to spend your time. You can even bone up on your Gull ID skills!

Ragged Robin said...

David Gascoigne. Thank you. Solihull really does have some good parks - many of which I have visited over the years but I always enjoy spending time at Brueton Park. It would be a good place to improve Gull id skills :)

Rosie said...

Looks like an interesting park in which to spend an hour or two. Your photos are lovely especially the heron:)

amanda peters said...

Lovely to see you out, looks like a great park to visit. Like you said it's a shame it's not that just bit nearer to you, as you could visit more often. Love the photos, nice to see the Heron. We get one at our park over wintering.
There has been a BIG debate on our Facebook page for the park.(with people falling out!!) They put sings up over the summer not to feed the ducks and swan bread, even advice from the Swan agency. But they have now back tracked as people are not feeding the birds the same, and the Swan people think the swans might starve over winter. Bread is OK as PART of a birds diet and good if there is nothing else to eat. What started it was piles of bread floating on ponds during the summer, it can get so bad it attracts rats as well, often going mouldy.
Ducks have been living on scraps for years and been fine.
Amanda xx

Ragged Robin said...

Rosie - Thanks so much. It is a lovely park - have found it useful in the past too when I've been chauffeuring my son and needed somewhere to while away a few hours. The bluebells and wild garlic in a different area of the park are lovely in Spring.

Amanda Peters - Thanks so much. Wish the parks round me were like that!
From what I have seen the bread versus duck food debate can cause a lot of controversy and argument! Interestingly, quite a few years ago we used to have regular visits from a pair of mallard on our garden pond who would stick around for weeks. We thought initially they were looking for a nest site but then came to the conclusion that they were eating the frog tadpoles!! They used to waddle up to the garage door for bread! Feeling guilty I bought a huge bag of duck food at great expense and they totally ignored duck food offerings refusing to eat it!

Pete Duxon said...

like the pic of the speculum at the end.

CherryPie said...

A lovely place to while away some time.

Chris Rohrer said...

This looks like a really fun outing. i like your birds:)You're dead on with your gull ID between juvenile and ID. Nice gull ID. I love city parks because they have some of the coolest birds hiding inside these "green" spaces.

Ragged Robin said...

Pete Duxon - Thank you - I was pleased with that one too. My son is gradually encouraging me to be more creative in my photography :)

CherryPie - Thank you - it is a super park.

Chris Rohrer - Thank you especially for confirming gull id :) It can be very interesting to see the wildlife that can occur in city parks - Solihull has some super examples. The good thing is too the birds are often fairly "tame" being used to people :)

Toffeeapple said...

I have the same problem as you do with Gull I.D.

Don't you just love Coots and Moorhens with their comedy feet and legs?

Ragged Robin said...

Toffeeapple - Thank you and I suspect we are not alone re: gull id! :)

Coots are Moorhens are brilliant - Brueton Park pool a good place to see those feet as they often come close and out of the water :)