Windy Bank Wood 14.06.16

Team Tuesday abandons the Arc and wanders about Windy Bank Wood…

It was plain to see that for once, and only once, in the Twelve years since the formation of Team Tuesday that we would have to abandon a planned wander about the byways for the rain fell in almost biblical proportions as we gathered in the car park at Bents illustrious garden centre—yes it looked that Windy Bank Wood, our chosen venue for the day would have to be left to its own devices!

A quick discussion led to a clear majority vote for a de-brief in the pets’  corner cafe rather than continuing with the walk…. yet even as the rain was washing away our sensible option for the day there were rumblings that perhaps some of our gathering may yet choose a rain-blessed trundle about a certain person’s blessed Moss-land territory!

Coffee, conversation and the odd scone then took precedence whilst the rain pounded down from Atlantic-enriched clouds, which seemed utterly determined to rob even those who might yet have chosen to take their binoculars out into the equivalent of a super efficient car-wash.

Then, as our gathering are well aware, the old adage came into play ‘Time is a Great Healer’ –  thus after but one half-hour all but three of our party found themselves outside and before any change of heart could even think of touching our horizon we were off…OystercatcherSwallow, Pied Wagtail, Cormorant, Collared Dove, etc. were then soon being scribed into the memory of our day’s chosen recorder…showing that a double figure tally was within our grasp—whatever the weather!

The bridge over the Glaze then gave a reasonable vantage point for our now fully enthused group of birdwatchers and from here House Martin, Song Thrush and Lapwing rapidly moved our list into double figures.

We then set off along the track that leads to the hidden gem of Windy Bank Wood noting Kestrel, Sand Martin and perhaps more importantly we realised the fact that the rain had stopped! – not a particularly blazing day in June I admit, but certainly by then a DRY one!

The now maturing plantations of trees carefully created by the Forestry Commission (whose site this is) looked lush and healthy whilst the wildflower meadows brimmed with IMG_2356a wide variety of plants that no doubt served a healthy insect life—although admittedly on this soggy day we were not blessed with the usual show of Dragonflies and Butterflies that we have encountered on such visits in the past. (The positive taken from this being that we also did not encounter those rascals of summer—Horseflies—‘every cloud…..’).

Willow Warbler song, although at this point in the busy breeding season not in abundance, was still carried in the air by the odd songster whilst a few Common Whitethroat thrashed away at their scratchy tune thus giving an assurance to us humankind that inspite of the weather our summer migrants were stoically soldiering on with their efforts to bring on the next generation.

We also gained the odd snatch of song from a couple of Blackcap and as a real bonus a Garden Warbler, although proving determinedly camera shy (when are they not some were heard to say), gave enough of its repertoire to allow a compare and contrast session betwixt these similar sounding sylvan Warblers.

We then ambled onward and soon regained our point of entry into this tranquil reserve after which we plodded on back to base pausing on the Bridge from which we happily noted our seasonal dragonfly treat — a number of Banded Demoiselle which gave a much needed blaze of colour to what had been a leaden-skyed day.

Fond farewells then rung in the air as the ever resilient ‘TT Birders’ celebrated the end of another great little amble about someone’s local patch. (DS)

Bird List (DS)

  1. Mallard
  2. Comorant
  3. Pheasant
  4. Grey Heron
  5. Buzzard
  6. Kestrel
  7. Moorhens
  8. Oystercatcher
  9. Lapwing
  10. Black-Headed Gull
  11. Lesser Black-Back Gull
  12. Feral Pigeon
  13. Stock Dove
  14. Wood Pigeon
  15. Collared Dove
  16. Swift
  17. Great Spotted Woodpecker
  18. Sand Martin
  19. Swallow
  20. House Martin
  21. Pied Wagtail
  22. Song Thrush
  23. Chiffchaff
  24. Great Tit
  25. Blue Tit
  26. Wren
  27. Dunnock
  28. Robin
  29. Missile Thrush
  30. Garden Warbler
  31. Blackcap
  32. Willow Warbler
  33. Whitethroat
  34. Coal Tit
  35. Long-tailed Tit
  36. Magpie
  37. Jackdaw
  38. Carrion Crow
  39. Starling
  40. Chaffinch
  41. Linnet
  42. Goldfinch
  43. Greenfinch
  44. Jay
  45. Goldcrest
  46. Blackbird
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