Saturday, 11 March 2017

A Belated Sandwell Valley Report!

A couple of weeks ago we mad a trip to the Valley with our good friends Wendy and Tim. We started of from the Forge Mill car park and did the RSPB 'bit', sadly the hide was shut as there were works going on on the paths, so we detoured down the muddy paths cutting out part of the reserve.

Tufty's were showing well as usual,
 and it was nice to see the Black-headed Gulls back in their Summer plumage,
 a couple of Oystercatchers were sunning themselves,
 and if you look closely there is a single Snipe on the left of this photo, keeping the Lapwing company.
 I was surprised to find two Yellow-legged Gulls, keeping to themselves away from the hoards of Black-headed Gulls.
 Even though Buzzards are now a common sight, I still love taking photos of such a brilliant bird.
Other birds of note at Forge Mill were plenty of Goosander, although none came close enough for a decent photo, likewise a few Pochard were about, and a pair of Shoveler seen from one of the screens. The feeders at the visitor centre provided Bullfinch, Greenfinch, the usual Tits, but unfortunately no sign of Willow Tits this time.

So after a good walk we popped back in the car and went over to Swan Pool for another walk.
At first sight nothing to special, but like Buzzards, Great Crested Grebes are always worth a photo or three!

A pair of Goldeneye were out in the middle of the pool:

always worth seeing. We then saw our first Stonechats of the year,

 The pools through out the Valley held plenty of Tufted Ducks,
 Grey Heron
 and as we wandered back, this Cormorant was seen showing off.
 The finally a Song Thrush popped out by the Car Park.

 A total of 39 species were seen, so not great but not bad either!

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