Friday, 28 December 2012
Miss E. Batchelor
Robert L. Smallwood (Bob?)
J.E. Sunderland (Ted)
Miss G. Thomas
Miss O. Willetts
Red = recently added (08/04/2013).
Also, Peter Morgan, if you're reading this, I'm still interested in your records. As always, I'll be pleased to hear from anyone else with records/memories too!
Sunday, 11 November 2012
Monday, 15 October 2012
Anyway, regulars here will be pleased to know that I've set up a twitter account for posting brief sightings news for the Earlswood area. It remains to be seen whether I keep it up though - you know what I'm like! I still intend to use this blog for more lengthy postings.
The Twitter account is at www.twitter.com/earlswoodbirds
Monday, 6 August 2012
Common Sandpiper at Windmill Pool; presumably the same bird present since the end of last month?
Common Redstart male in horse pasture hedge south side of Gypsy Lane.
Grasshopper Warbler heard reeling in Spring Brook Scrubland, and whilst attempting to see it (without success) a flock of 8 Crossbills flew over calling.
A certain over-summering duck remains, currently at Engine Pool.
The Gropper takes my patch year list to 109. Due to late shifts at work, I've not done much birding in the last couple of months, but hope to write a summary of what little has been seen when time allows. Please email me your Earlswood sightings from recent months as I've likely missed anything interesting.
Water levels appear to be falling at the two main pools (over a foot below maximum) - if they drop further and expose more lakebed, will we get some waders?
Sunday, 10 June 2012
Saturday, 14 April 2012
- Male Redstart in hedge around larger horse pasture visible from the brick bridge (Gypsy Lane) at the southwest corner of Windmill Pool. I had a female in this same hedge last autumn, so evidently they like it.
- Two Oystercatchers flying around the two main pools, briefly settling on one of the reed islands, then heading off over Terry's Pool.
- A Yellow Wagtail flew straight over Engine Pool.
- Three Rooks (finally) over Springbrook Lane area.
Saturday, 7 April 2012
St Patrick’s Church,
“A striking & unexpected accent in a wholly rural landscape” (Quote from English Heritage)
In 2011, St Patrick’s Church,
Bank Holiday Monday 9th April
Visitors will be welcome between 10am-4pm. There will be
· accompanied tours
· a chance to sit quietly
· the Millennium Tapestry to see
· wildflowers in our churchyard conservation area
· books for sale
· refreshments to enjoy.
Car parking is available in the car park, 100m along from the church
Contact phone number:
Barbara Philp 07734 228500
Saturday, 10 March 2012
Thursday, 8 March 2012
Saturday, 25 February 2012
- "The creation of a Country Park based on Earlswood Lakes, Clowes Wood and New Fallings Coppice will be supported, in conjunction with the Canal and River Trust (currently British Waterways), Warwickshire Wildlife Trust, Tanworth-in-Arden Parish Council, Warwickshire County Council and Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council." (p67)
- "Earlswood Lakes Country Park – creation of a new recreation-focused attraction to the south of Solihull, which also seeks to reduce woodland fragmentation and enhance the existing lakes and visitor attraction in the area. Solihull (along with Coventry) has the most significant deficit in terms of sub-regional GI resources. Earlswood Lakes are easily accessible by train from Solihull (Shirley) as well as from various settlements in Stratford-on-Avon District." (p70) GI = Green Infrastructure
- Q79 - Should the potential for providing a Country Park based on Earlswood Lakes be pursued and, if so, what issues need to be addressed? (p72)
- Scheme anticipated for sometime during 2016-2021 and requiring "comprehensive feasibility testing". (p218)
Tuesday, 21 February 2012
Earlswood Wildlife Partnership
This year we want to build on the great start that we have already made on several projects in the area and hopefully start on more - but we will need your help! At the end of this newsletter you will find a list of dates and activities we have planned so please put the dates in your diary and if you are interested in helping with any of the projects please let us know so that we can keep you personally updated. You can contact us on email@example.com.
Last year we installed nearly 80 bat boxes in Clowes Wood and around Terry’s Pool. This year we want to install more but we also need to find out if any bats are using the boxes already put up. If you can help with installing the bat boxes come along and join us on Saturday 25thFebruary (see details below) and there may be an opportunity for a bat box survey (weather permitting) as we will have licensed bat handlers with us who will be able to check the bat boxes and show any residents to us.
It would be helpful if you could let us know in advance if you are willing to help so that we can plan how many boxes we can install.
We also hope to take the opportunity to install some dormouse survey tubes in Clowes Wood. Dormice are important as a “flagship species” – if dormice are present then you can be sure the environment is as good as it can be and will support a wide range of other woodland species. Warwickshire Wildlife Trust have a long-term project underway in Clowes Wood to encourage dormice so a view of the current population is necessary.
This year we would also like to help our feathered friends by installing more bird nest boxes around the area, but first we need to make them. We are hoping to hold a workshop on Saturday 24th March (details below) and again need all the helpers that we can get. If you have your own tools so much the better, but it is not necessary. Let us know if you are interested.
Saturday 23rd June will be Fete Day in Earlswood and we will be there!
We hope to have a stall offering wildflower plants, bird boxes and bat boxes for sale, together with information on the projects we have started and hope to undertake in the future.
Butterfly Survey & Moth Recording
Again we will be running our Back Garden Butterfly Survey, a form will be attached to the next newsletter.
Thanks to everyone that returned their forms (if you still have one to return it is not too late). We are busily collating all of the information and will report back in the next newsletter.
Several members also ran moth traps in their gardens throughout the year and again we hope to share the results in the next newsletter. If you would like to join in, we have moth traps that you can borrow, and we hope to set up a “moth morning” later in the year so you can come along and see what it is all about. Once again let us know if you are interested.
Later in the year we hope to clean up the benches around the lakes, many people have commented that they are looking a bit tired and in need of some TLC. We will let you know when a date has been set for this.
Our AGM this year will be held on Thursday 15th May at Earlswood Village Hall. We hope to see as many of you as possible. We would welcome your views on what we have done up to now and help us to shape the activities for the future.
Hope to see you at one of our activities
Dates for your Diary 2012
Sat 25th February Bat box survey 10.00 am Malthouse Lane Car park
Sat 24th March Bird box workshop 10.00am Malthouse Lane Car park
Sun 15th April Woodland Walk 2.30pm Clowes Woods Car park
Sat 21st April 1st Reptile Survey 10.00am Malthouse Lane Car park
Sun 6th May Dawn Chorus Walk 4.30am Clowes Woods Car Park
Sun 13th May Spring Walk 2.30pm Clowes Woods Car park
Tues 15th May AGM 7.30pm Earlswood Village Hall
Sat 23rd June Earlswood Fete 12– 4. pm Malthouse Lane Car park
Friday, 3 February 2012
Thursday, 26 January 2012
Sunday, 22 January 2012
Pink-footed Goose - two of unknown origin (Martin Lindop).
Little Tern - three at the lakes briefly (Martin Lindop).
Hoopoe - one at Manor Farm briefly (Richard Greer), which was the first record at an Earlswood property but the second for my recording area.
Stonechat - one seen from Springbrook Lane (Mike Jeeves).
Grasshopper Warbler - one heard near the pumping station south of Windmill Pool (Jim Winsper).
Crossbill - a pair at Terry's Green (Mike Jeeves), the first confirmed record for my recording area.
Still you can't see everything. The only other major disappointment of the year and a big embarrassment was overlooking the 2 Ruff, even though a number of dog-walkers saw them without binoculars, but at least I saw the one of them.
On the plus side I added 17 species to my patch life list, which were:
Night Heron (had to put this at the top!)
Little Ringed Plover
Short-eared Owl (site first!)
Tree Pipit (both birds heard only but still counting them!)
As far as Earlswood is concerned, I'm sure 2011 will be best remembered for the long-staying Night Heron, which allowed numerous midlands birders to see it; a county tick for many Warwickshire birders too. However, it was also a better year than usual for waders (16 species), Shelduck (3 records), Little Egret (4 records), Little Gull (4 or 5 records) and terns (5 species). Another highlight for me (though not in Earlswood) was finding a putative Northern/Continental Long-tailed Tit in my back garden, which if accepted by the national British Bird Rarities Committee would actually be the rarest bird I've found to-date. I intend to put another post on here of 2011 bird photos taken at Earlswood soon...
Saturday, 21 January 2012
Good to meet John Yardley at the lakes, and walking around we had 15 Siskins at Engine Pool and a flock of c. 160 Lapwings over Windmill Pool, the latter being the largest flock of this species that I've seen at Earlswood. Although I haven't seen any in the last few days, Golden Plovers have been flying over the area in large numbers this winter too, with Tony Philp recording a flock of 600+ over the Hungry Horse field (WMids) on the 11th.
Friday, 20 January 2012
Thursday, 19 January 2012
Wednesday, 18 January 2012
Tuesday, 17 January 2012
P.S. I've been trying to update the systematic list of birds and birders' lists pages, but it seems my account has expired and the company want my card details, even though it's free, so looks like I'm gonna have to move this elsewhere.
Monday, 16 January 2012
Sunday, 15 January 2012
Saturday, 14 January 2012
Obviously I'm very excited about what 2012 will bring in terms of birds and it's looking good so far, though it will take a lot to beat last year, which was possibly the best year at Earlswood on record in terms of number of species. I hope to write a summary of 2011 in another post, including the many photos sent to me which I've so far failed to put on here. May I take this opportunity to thank everyone who's sent me their sightings and/or photos - they're much appreciated, so please keep them coming :-)
A number of uncommon birds have visited Earlswood so far this winter, and it will be interesting to discover what else occurs in the next few months now the water levels are much higher than they had been. Whilst water levels were still very low back in November, a Shelduck, a Dunlin and a Rock Pipit visited the lakes. This winter's undoubted highlight though was in December when a Short-eared Owl circled briefly over Windmill Pool (a first for Earlswood), whilst other good birds visiting the lakes in that month were a Peregrine Falcon flying over, two Gadwall, a Shoveler and a Little Gull. More recently this year, a Kittiwake blown inland by the strong winds, two Shelducks flying over, a Little Owl, four Wigeon, another Gadwall and another Shoveler were seen. A pair of Mandarin Ducks have been present for a while, favouring Terry's Pool, and several Teal have been seen. A Woodcock appears to be over-wintering in the vicinity of the lakes, as does a Kestrel which strangely has even been seen in Earlswood Common gardens backing onto Windmill Pool. Peaks of 600+ Golden Plovers and c. 110 Lapwing have been seen flying over the area, with flocks being seen on many more occasions than usual. Other winter visitors like Redwing, Fieldfare, Siskin and Lesser Redpoll are also residing at Earlswood this winter, but perhaps in lower numbers than the 2010-11 winter. In the Manor Farm and Hungry Horse area along Norton Lane, the Peregrine was seen on two consecutive days, apparently feeding on prey, and was photographed. In a garden near the lakes, up to five Brambling have been reported visiting.
Talking of gardens, I'd love to hear from residents about interesting birds they see in their gardens or the local area and can be contacted via email (firstname.lastname@example.org). Perhaps you have a Blackcap wintering in your garden, or you've counted a large flock of House Sparrows visiting your feeders? Maybe something unusual like a Brambling or even a Black Redstart or Waxwing pays a visit? Perhaps on a walk around the local area you find something "strange"? Do please get in touch. (N.B. obviously photos are very useful for identifying or confirming something unusual).