TAILS OF A NATURE RESERVE: The Wolseley Centre 21.02.14

The Goldfinch
The Goldfinch

Whenever I visit a nature reserve, I always take my camera and I do get carried away snapping pictures. The problem is, once I get home, it then takes me quite a while to select my favouites because I think every photograph shows a little bit more about the birds behaviour and personality.

I discovered the Wolseley Centre, which is part of the Staffordshire Wildlife Trust, last year and it is one of my favourite nature reserves in Staffordshire. It was once the ancestral home of the Wolseley Family, their connections dating back to the 11th Century.

The reserve has various habitats including wet meadow, reedbeds, woodland and heathland. It also has a beautiful wildlife garden with various plants, insect homes and bird feeders which are regularly topped up with various bird seeds.

The weather on Friday started off sunny but soon became overcast. With dark clouds threatening a heavy downpour at any minute, my mum and I were quite lucky to escape any rain that day. There were times when the sun broke through the clouds, but when it disappeared there was a bitter cold wind.

The Wildlife Garden

We visited the wildlife garden first and were not disappointed by the number of birds visiting the garden. Blue, great and coal tits; chaffinches; robins; goldfinches and blackbirds. Then a bird I have only seen once in the past, a siskin. We also heard greenfinches in the trees but were not lucky enough to spot one.

Goldfinches at the niger seed feeder
Goldfinches at the niger seed feeder.
Male chaffinch
Male chaffinch
Great tit and Blue tit showdown.
Great tit and Blue tit showdown.
The Goldfinch
The Goldfinch
IMG_6177
Siskin and Goldfinch
IMG_6180
Siskin.
IMG_6186
Robin, a very territorial bird.
Great tit
Great tit
Cheeky little blue tit
Cheeky little blue tit
Coal tit
Coal tit
Coal tit. Identifiable from the marsh tit as it has a white stripe running down the back of its head.
Coal tit. Identifiable from the marsh tit as it has a white stripe running down the back of its head.

By the River

It is always nice to meet someone when out walking who shares a similar enthusiasm to you. We met a man called Eugene who had taken up bird watching and photography after retiring. We got chatting and he told us he had never seen a kingfisher. It was only last year I spotted my first kingfisher here at the Wolseley Centre on the lake. So we took Eugene to the place where they are regularly spotted. My mum and I had spotted the kingfisher on the lake earlier that day so we knew he was about. I showed Eugene the kingfishers usual flight path and then left him to it. So if you are reading this Eugene, we hope you managed to spot him!

One of my favourite birds, the long tailed tit. He was sitting by the river. This is the first photo I have been able to get of a long tailed tit.
One of my favourite birds, the long tailed tit. He was sitting by the river. This is the first photo I have managed to take of a long tailed tit, so I am very pleased!

The Kingfisher

The kingfisher flight path. The red spots show where the kingfisher stops and where the grey wagtail was spotted. The kingfisher then flies over the fields and.....
The kingfisher flight path. The red spots show where the kingfisher stops and where the grey wagtail was spotted. The kingfisher then flies over the fields and….
...down the river to another tree. The red spot shows where the kingfisher stops.
…down the river to another tree. The red spot shows where the kingfisher stops.
A good nesting spot for kingfishers. Unfortunately due to the amount of rain the rivers water level has risen considerably.
A good nesting spot for kingfishers. Unfortunately due to the amount of rain we have had recently, the water level has risen considerably.

There is a plaque on the fence by the lake which always pulls at my heart strings, so I had to include it in my blog. This was obviously someone like me who got a lot of enjoyment from sitting by this lake and waiting for the kingfisher to arrive.

IMG_6101

Unfortunately I wasn’t able to get a photograph of the kingfisher, but seeing the unmistakable flash of blue over the lake was enough for me that day. We also spotted a grey wagtail on the lake. Another bird I have only seen once in the past.

Unfortunately not the best photo, but definately a grey wagtail by the lake.
Unfortunately not the best photo, but definately evidence of a grey wagtail by the lake.
IMG_6244
Also able to identify this wagtail by its loud piercing two-note call.

Map

map
A map of The Wolseley Centre

Yellow Dot: Wildlife Garden

Blue Dot: Visitor Centre

Red Dot: Best Spot for kingfishers

To view more of my Wolseley Centre photos please visit my flickr site.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/organize/?start_tab=sets

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s