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Birding In Staffordshire (2 Viewers)

Hi all, I've recently moved to Staffordshire (Newcastle under Lyme to be precise) and I know nothing about birding in this county. Any sites worth visiting? I like the sound of Doxey Marshes so I'll visit that at some point.

Already been to see the Smew in Hanley, don't think I've ever seen one in such a busy place before!
 
could only find single male wheatear at Berry Hill this morning, also snipe,sparrowhawk, GS woodpecker among others...
Ozz
 
Hi all, I've recently moved to Staffordshire (Newcastle under Lyme to be precise) and I know nothing about birding in this county. Any sites worth visiting? I like the sound of Doxey Marshes so I'll visit that at some point.

Already been to see the Smew in Hanley, don't think I've ever seen one in such a busy place before!

there is apedale and silverdale country park in your immediate area, mainly ,common birds but the odd good bird can turn up, then there is berryhill fields very good for spring migrants, hanchurch woods, rspb coombes valley, Cannock chase, and if you become a member of west midlands bird club, as mentioned belvide reservoir and blithfield reservoir are very good, also the Staffordshire moors, aqualate mere:t:
 
First Swallow of the year at Gailey today. Can't recall any other reports for Staffs this year.

Also 12 Snipe in nearby field, 4 Oyc , Chiffchaff up to 8, roosting Tawny Owl still, and Redpoll over.

On nearby farmland a Little Owl was seen well and it was pleasing to see 2 Tree Sparrows and 5 Yellowhammers which are getting scarce nowadays.
 
At Hanchurch today in with the large flock of Chaffinch which we're coming down to the seed by the boulder at least 5 Bambling were noted including 2 great looking males.

Tim
 
Recent sightings around the house include dipper and goosander on the Dove, plus a dipper from the main bridge in Ashbourne (slightly over the border I know). Little owl, chiffchaff from the doorstep and tawny owls also down by the Dove.

Over in Stoke yesterday for a run from Sandyford to Packmoor to Kidsgrove, then to Westport before heading back to Sandyford.

Packmoor to Kidsgrove (old railway lines): 5 chiffchaffs and a singing willow tit.
Westport Lake: 2, maybe 3, chiffchaffs; legs hurt too much to pay too much attention at that point.

I was hoping to pick up sand martin or swallow, but no such luck. Plenty of time for that though.

Adam
 
Only 13 sand martins counted at the colony on the upper Blithe valley site on the 8th,lowest number at this time for a few years, still redwing in the woodlands.
 
Willow warbler and swallow at RSPB Coombes Valley on Thursday. A wheatear and swallow at the Roaches too.

Pied flycatcher should be back at Coombes now; they've been there on the 9th and 10th of April for the last 3-4 years I think. Sadly I'm working this weekend, so I can't get there to go look for them until Monday. Well worth an early morning jaunt for someone though, nowt like the rush of hearing the first one of the year :t:

Adam
 
Quite a bizarre and impressive sight yesterday at Gailey.

As I was driving back along Gailey Lea Lane a very tame fem Sprawk was sat on the hedge and didn't budge as I stopped.

It then flew to a low roadside tree and again wasn't bothered by my presence. I suddenly realised a Tawny Owl was sat a couple of feet away from it staring right at me in the open. They then began to take turn in launching themselves at each other whilst calling. After a couple of minutes they went their separate ways. The Tawny looked the hardest!

One of those brilliant moments where I wish I had recorded such an event!
 
Only 13 sand martins counted at the colony on the upper Blithe valley site on the 8th,lowest number at this time for a few years, still redwing in the woodlands.

6 Wheatear in the paddock next to the scrape yesterday 16/4 ozz ' George had a Stonechat and a little Egret down by the Blithe last week' i went have a look the next day but they had gone,,
 
Visited Berryhill for the first time today, wandering around not really knowing where the key spots to look were, so didn't see the Ring Ouzel. Saw a few Wheatear though, and absolutely loads of Mistle and Song Thrushes including a few juveniles. A Great Spotted Woodpecker was feeding in one of the paddocks which I was surprised to see. Lots of Kestrel and Buzzard around hunting and displaying. Saw a Brown Hare dashing through the paddocks which was nice to see too.

Would anyone be kind enough to point out the best areas to look around here? I keep seeing Palletstacks being mentioned but I had no idea where that was. Today I parked on Arbourfield Drive and walked up towards the paddocks by the mast, wandered along a small path winnowing through the paddocks and next to the graveyard before following a track which took me out by the factories on the eastern side and headed down to where I was parked.
 
Visited Berryhill for the first time today, wandering around not really knowing where the key spots to look were, so didn't see the Ring Ouzel. Saw a few Wheatear though, and absolutely loads of Mistle and Song Thrushes including a few juveniles. A Great Spotted Woodpecker was feeding in one of the paddocks which I was surprised to see. Lots of Kestrel and Buzzard around hunting and displaying. Saw a Brown Hare dashing through the paddocks which was nice to see too.

Would anyone be kind enough to point out the best areas to look around here? I keep seeing Palletstacks being mentioned but I had no idea where that was. Today I parked on Arbourfield Drive and walked up towards the paddocks by the mast, wandered along a small path winnowing through the paddocks and next to the graveyard before following a track which took me out by the factories on the eastern side and headed down to where I was parked.

I think this is still up to date.

https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewe....006443,-2.1439&spn=0.01898,0.042186&t=h&z=15

More info on the site can be found on the Opus on here http://www.birdforum.net/opus/Berry_Hill

Hope this helps.

In other news, blackcap and redstart are back at Coombes Valley. Pied flycatchers have also been reported by visitors.

Adam
 
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Great morning at Coombes Valley today. Six singing pied flycatchers, a female pied fly, two redstarts and a whitethroat were all new for the year and the first decent reports/sightings of the star species. The pied fly and redstarts are in the usual places; in Clough Meadow and around the pond. Loved picking the songs out some 10 months or so after last hearing them. Coombes, in the sun, summer migrants singing, incredible.

The whitethroat was singing on/off behind the bird feeders by the visitor centre. Two kestrels were over the VC too. Blackcap, chiffchaff and willow warbler were all over the site as well.

Adam
 
Had a quick walk around Hanchurch this morning, noted a Tree Pipit in the clear fell area near where they are currently felling along from the woodman's cottage, also saw a Tiger Beetle along the track.

Tim.
 
Cannock chase this afternoon from the Glacial boulder down to the stepping stones......loads of Swifts and House Martins. Redstart, 6 Tree Pipits, 6 Cuckoos, 7 Green Woodpeckers, 5 Yellowhammers, 8 Willow Warblers. Not many Meadow Pipits.
 
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