Previously "Diary of a Birding Medic"

Previously "Rugby Birder"

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Cannock Chase

Pied Flycatcher

Pied Flycatcher

Pied Flycatcher

A window of opportunity opened this morning and liking what I saw, I decided to visit Cannock Chase in search of some year ticks. This was my first visit and I arrived at seven springs car park at 0730, opting to walk to the stepping stones and back. The day was bright with sunny intervals but once on the chase I was surprised how poor the light was. To get any camera speed I was having to use 800 & 1600 ISO which was a shame and all my pictures are poor and grainy. My first year tick of the day was Tree Pipit with several spiralling on the heathland, followed by female Redstart in the first wooded copse, then Spotted Flycatcher and finally Pied Flycatcher at the stepping stones. I was glad that I arrived early as I missed most of the dog walkers, horse riders, cyclists, joggers and school group that were increasing as I finished my walk at 1130. I had almost given up hope of a male Redstart but one eventually appeared, resplendent, but unfortunately too distant to photograph.

Despite the poor light quality, I thoroughly enjoyed my walk and will definitely return again (soon).

Sightings (36 bird species):

Robin; Chaffinch; Great Spotted Woodpecker; Song Thrush; Great Tit; Wren; Willow Warbler; Carrion Crow; Garden Warbler; Wood Pigeon; Tree Pipit; Blue Tit; Blackbird; Redstart; Green Woodpecker; Cuckoo; Spotted Flycatcher; Pheasant; Coal Tit; Treecreeper; Nuthatch; Chiffchaff; Pied Flycatcher; Grey Wagtail; Goldfinch; Jackdaw; Stock Dove; Jay; Greenfinch; Buzzard; Swallow; Common Whitethroat; Blackcap; Swift; Yellowhammer; Magpie.


Max Silverman said...

Well done Kevin.Very nice shots of the Pied F/C.When I went there I got close to them but it was so gloomy in the coppice my shots were disappointing.

Kevin Groocock said...

Thanks, Max. This P Fly was very obliging but the Redstarts and Spot Fly were too far in the poor light. Still, my intention was year ticks and these I got!

Mick Brewer said...

Kevin, was in a hide at Minsmere last month and a lady from Litchfield told me what a good place Cannock Chase was for birds and mentioned in particular the pied flycatchers she had seen. Did some research on the web and came across your blog. Visited the Chase on Friday morning, parked at Punchbowl and walked to Stepping Stones. Picked up redstarts, pied and spotted flycatcher and wood warbler. A great morning, but wouldn't have done it without your very helpful information. Many thanks.

Kevin Groocock said...

Many thanks, Mick, glad you had a successful day. Cannock Chase is a new area for me and its massive size suggests a wealth in bird life. I am pleased that you got Wood Warbler, a bird I have not seen or heard for several years. Apart from the birds, some very good walks over the Chase are very inviting.

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