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Coney Meadow and Adjoining Areas

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Old Sunday 3rd December 2017, 14:26   #1801
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39 Wigeon just flew over Coney in 3 flocks. About 20 flew over yesterday but I only caught the back end of them and didn't get much on them. Much better views today.

New for the year and the first recorded on the patch for several years.
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Old Sunday 3rd December 2017, 17:22   #1802
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within 15 mins of arrival I had ticked off all the corvids, Blue, Coal and great tits, Treecreeper, 2 Nuthatch, once again starlings steel the show.
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Old Monday 4th December 2017, 08:23   #1803
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Further species recorded Friday - Sunday:

Coot (Tapenhall pool), Tufted Duck, Snipe, Buzzard, Water Rail, Kestrel, Sparrowhawk, Raven, Coal Tit, Nuthatch, Treecreeper, Goldcrest, Stock Dove, Green Woodpecker, Grey Wagtail, Great spotted Woodpecker, Jay, Mistle Thrush, Redwing, Fieldfare, Lesser Redpoll, Bullfinch, Song Thrush, Siskin, Meadow Pipit, Skylark, House Sparrow, Grey Heron, Cormorant, Reed Bunting, Goldfinch, Chaffinch, Linnet, Greenfinch, Pied Wagtail, Herring Gull, LBB Gull, BH Gull, etc.

2500+ starlings roosted.

A mink was seen along the canal at Salwarpe
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Old Saturday 9th December 2017, 13:39   #1804
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A Cetti's Warbler called a couple of times from Coney reedbed this morning - the first I've heard since the first winter period of 2017.

A Chiffchaff at the eastern end of Coney Meadow.

2+ Blackcaps just west of Salwarpe feeding on Mistletoe berries.

24 Lapwings over between Harford Hill and Tapenhall (near the Bowling Green pub)
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Old Sunday 10th December 2017, 13:12   #1805
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not coney but close around Chawson Droitwich today, 55 Fieldfare, 4 redwing. 6 Blackbirds, sparrows, 70+ starlings, 10 goldfinch, 6 BHGs, LBBG, Herring gull. 6 snowmen 1 snowwomen.
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Old Sunday 10th December 2017, 18:04   #1806
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3000 starlings dropped in Saturday evening from 15.30 to 15.50
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Old Monday 11th December 2017, 08:36   #1807
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A few extra items from Saturday morning up to midday:

Kingfisher at New Mill, Sparrowhawk, Skylarks, Buzzard, Kestrel, both the usual woodpeckers, Nuthatches, Goldcrests, Redwings, Fieldfares, a couple each of Redpoll and Siskin over. Coal Tit heard, Grey Heron, Raven, Stock Doves, Grey Wagtail, etc.
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Old Monday 18th December 2017, 08:26   #1808
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2 Shovelers over Coney towards Westwood late afternoon yesterday were the first I've seen on the patch this year.
5500 (estimated) Starlings roosted in Coney reedbed - the next couple of weeks should see numbers peaking.
40+ Canada Geese flew over High park towards Westwood.
A Water Rail was flushed from the grassland in Coney Meadow on Friday.
A female Tawny Owl was calling from Salwarpe Court mid-morning on Friday - a bit ununsual but one was also noted calling during the daytime a couple of months ago.
One Yellowhammer over Coney on Friday and a couple around Sinton Lane.
A couple of Lesser Redpolls feeding on weed seeds in Coney.
A few Siskins over and perched in Alders around Salwarpe Court.
Good numbers of Skylarks in the fields around Sinton Lane (possibly up to 100) and a flock of 15 over Coney.
Other species noted included Ravens, Meadow Pipits, Coal Tit, Grey Wagtail, Fieldfares, Redwings, Goldcrests, Grey Heron, Buzzards, Linnets, Bullfinches, Cormorants, Woodpeckers, Nuthatches, etc.
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Old Thursday 28th December 2017, 13:17   #1809
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31 Golden Plovers over Salwarpe heading north-west.

Pretty sure I had 3 over a couple of days before Christmas but it was a foggy morning and I only caught the back end of them.
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Old Saturday 30th December 2017, 10:22   #1810
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2CY Common Gull over Hawford.
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Old Sunday 31st December 2017, 10:51   #1811
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Female Shoveler on flood water at New Mill paddocks.

4 Lesser Redpolls feeding on weed seeds in Coney Meadow earlier.
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Old Sunday 31st December 2017, 18:08   #1812
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A few decent patch-birds to end the year over the past week and half. Apart from the Golden Plovers, Shoveler, and Common Gull, more 'standard fare' species for the time of year included male and female Blackcap between Salwarpe and Ladywood, up to a dozen Siskins around Salwarpe, Tufted Duck between Chatley and Hawford, Water Rails, Yellowhammer, Meadow Pipits, several good-sized flocks of Linnets around Knight's Grove ( c250 in total) Redwings, Fieldfares, Sparrowhawks, Kestrels, Buzzards, Ravens, Jays, singing Mistle Thrushes, Grey Herons, Cormorants, Goldcrests, Nuthatches, Coal Tits, Green and Great Spotted Woodpeckers, Grey and Pied Wagtails, Kingfisher, Stock Doves, House Sparrows, Reed Buntings plus the 3 regular gulls and other common specoes. The lat Starling roost I attended contained around 4000.
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Old Sunday 31st December 2017, 18:54   #1813
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Highlights of 2017

I recorded a total of 107 species over the year. It was fairly hard-going most of the time but made worthwhile due to the following notable records:

Hawfinches in early November
Ring-necked Parakeet in October
A couple of Bramblings
Wildfowl including Goosander, Pintail, Wigeons, Shovelers and Mandarins.
Red Kites - several spring sightings
Waders including Green Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, Ruff, Redshank, Curlew and Golden Plovers.
Excellent spring passage of Wheatears involving up to 22 individuals. None in autumn, however.
Strong autumn passage of Common Redstarts plus a few in spring - including my earliest ever in late March.
A couple of Stonechats in autumn.
Just one Whinchat recorded (in spring).
Decent double-passage of Yellow Wagtails, Spotted Flycatchers and a few Tree Pipits.
Common Terns fairly regular between May and August.
A poor year for Grasshopper Warbler with just 3 spring records.
Great Crested Grebes in spring and Little Grebes occassionally encountered on the various ponds.
Little Egrets fairly regular at times.

In addition, a White Stork which was present in the vicinity was viewable from the patch on 20th August. Unfortunately, however, the bird was known to be an escape!

Happy New Year and good birding in 2018!

Last edited by Woodchat : Sunday 31st December 2017 at 18:57.
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Old Tuesday 2nd January 2018, 08:16   #1814
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Although there have been several fly-over records in the past, the Shoveler at New Mill on the last day of the year was the first I've ever seen 'on the deck' on the patch - crappy record shot below.

No sign of it yesterday but there were 22 Canada Geese in that area. The water levels have receded so I hope we have more rain to top them up - this area can be quite productive when it floods.

Three Lesser Redpolls were feeding on weed seeds in front of the screen yesterday afternoon, a few Meadow Pipits over, winter Thrushes, displaying Ravens and singing Great Tits and Mistle Thrushes.
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Old Sunday 7th January 2018, 10:04   #1815
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Green Sandpiper along the river at Mildenham flew towards Chatley.
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Old Monday 8th January 2018, 08:34   #1816
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A few other items:

A Cetti's Warbler called from Coney on Saturday evening.
Water Rails at Hawford (along canal) and at Coney Meadow.
A few Siskins overhead plus several flocks of Linnets.
One Skylark near Hawford
A male Blackcap between salwarpe and Ladywood on 1st January.

Treecreeper, Nuthatches, Goldcrests, Coal Tits, winter Thrushes, Mistle and Song Thrushes, Cormorants, Grey Herons, Kestrel, Buzzard, Ravens, Grey and Pied Wagtails, Meadow Pipits - pretty typical for the time of year.

It looks like the viewing screen at Coney has blown down (or possibly been vandalised) - see attached - I have reported it to the Canal and River Trust.
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Old Monday 15th January 2018, 08:35   #1817
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News from the weekend (Fri - Sun):

A Peregrine over Middleton Bank yesterday then perched on nearby pylons.
A Yellowhammer over Egg Lane yesterday.
A male Tawny Owl calling from Salwarpe area on Saturday evening.
At least 2 Water Rails in Coney reedbed plus Cetti's heard a couple of times.
Drake tufted Duck on small pool between Hawford and Chatley.
A Kingfisher caught a fish on the canal on Saturday.
Male Blackcap in hedge along canal between Salwarpe and Ladywood.
About 50 Linnets in cattle field along Copcut Lane with lots of winter Thrushes.
4 Siskins in trees around Salwarpe Court on Friday plus a few flyovers

Sparrowhawks, Kestrels, Buzzards, Treecreeper, Goldcrests, Cormorants, Grey Herons, a few Meadow Pipits, Pied Wagtails, Green and Great Spotted Woodpeckers, Greenfinches, Nuthatches, Chaffinches, Moorhens, Mute swans, reed Buntings, starlings, House Sparrows, etc.
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Old Thursday 18th January 2018, 22:13   #1818
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I visited Coney Meadow earlier. Very muddy!
Happy to see a Mistle Thrush nice and close along the canal.
I didn't see any open water within the meadow at all. Is there access to the reserve except the path that runs parallel to the canal towpath?
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Old Sunday 21st January 2018, 20:18   #1819
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Took a walk around canal and reedbed today and sadly found a dead adult barn owl at Droitwich end of reedbed near to pond. No obvious signs of injury.
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Old Monday 22nd January 2018, 08:25   #1820
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Triturus View Post
Took a walk around canal and reedbed today and sadly found a dead adult barn owl at Droitwich end of reedbed near to pond. No obvious signs of injury.
Hi Mike,

No sign of it around there on Friday so probably freshly dead- they can be quite vulnerable to starvation at this time of year and struggle to hunt in periods of persistent rain. Very sad!

Two Coots were on Tapenhall Pool yesterday
Tufted Duck in small pool between Hawford and Chatley.
Tawny Owl calling from Droitwich Woods area on Saturday night.
Male and female Blackcaps between Salwarpe and Ladywood on Friday.
Lots of winter thrushes along Copcut Lane.
Grey wagtail, the odd Meadow pipit over, etc.

Otherwise, fairly quiet and very wet!
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Old Monday 22nd January 2018, 08:47   #1821
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jameswl View Post
I visited Coney Meadow earlier. Very muddy!
Happy to see a Mistle Thrush nice and close along the canal.
I didn't see any open water within the meadow at all. Is there access to the reserve except the path that runs parallel to the canal towpath?
Not much open water left in Coney Meadow, itself - just the small pool in the eastern section. An area which was opened up in front of the old screen has now been encroached. There are several areas of open water further down the Salwarpe valley plus areas that are subject to seasonal flooding - these are always worth checking out - let me know if you are interested and I will post a map / maps.

With regard to footpaths, it is recommended to keep to the ones you highlight - especially during the breeding season. At this time of year, however, disturbance is less of an issue if you do wander off them.
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Old Monday 22nd January 2018, 10:06   #1822
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodchat View Post
Not much open water left in Coney Meadow, itself - just the small pool in the eastern section. An area which was opened up in front of the old screen has now been encroached. There are several areas of open water further down the Salwarpe valley plus areas that are subject to seasonal flooding - these are always worth checking out - let me know if you are interested and I will post a map / maps.
Thanks. There's no need to post maps, but thank you for the offer. I'll pop back when warblers are about!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodchat View Post
With regard to footpaths, it is recommended to keep to the ones you highlight - especially during the breeding season. At this time of year, however, disturbance is less of an issue if you do wander off them.
Noted. Thank you.
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Old Monday 22nd January 2018, 18:04   #1823
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Triturus View Post
Took a walk around canal and reedbed today and sadly found a dead adult barn owl at Droitwich end of reedbed near to pond. No obvious signs of injury.
Don't know if you have the bird, or are able to get it and send to http://pbms.ceh.ac.uk/
One area they cover is the amount of rodenticide in such raptors.
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Old Saturday 27th January 2018, 18:18   #1824
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A Woodcock seen in flight at dusk this evening from the canal towpath - it flew over the field at the back of Salwarpe Court.

At least seven Snipes flew out of Coney reedbed.

Cetti's and Water Rails calling from the reedbed.

Tawny Owls calling around Salwarpe and Droitwich Woods.

Decent flock of Chaffiches in trees around Salwarpe - 25+.

Singing Mistle Thrush.
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Old Sunday 28th January 2018, 18:48   #1825
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Woodcock again this evening flew along the canal towards Salwarpe village at 17:20 - I was standing by the picnic bench opposite the entrance to Coney and had pretty good silhouette views as it flew directly overhead.

19 Greylags flew over Coney at dusk.

Calling Tawny Owl plus several Snipe.

A male Lapwing flew high over Tapenhall towards Hawford late morning.
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