Trip reports

Walks with Nature 2018

Walks with Nature 2018
Tegg's Nose walk - Martin James

Thursday, 17 May 2018

The walks, which are all within 10 miles of Macclesfield, are continuing to prove very popular. In total 134 people attended the six walks - well up on 2017 and 2016 when 113 and 97 people respectively took part.

Thursday 12 April (6.00 am to 8.00 am) - Dawn Chorus at Styal Country Park
11 people attended.
25 species seen and/or heard (H) and in particular:
chiffchaff, dipper, great spotted woodpecker, goosander, green woodpecker (H), grey wagtail, jay, nuthatch, raven, tawny owl (H).
This was a new venue for us and it proved to be a very enjoyable and rewarding early morning walk, especially as it was outside normal hours for the majority of people who exercise their dogs on this extremely popular dog-walking route.

Thursday 12 April - Trentabank Reservoir
41 people attended including members of the Macclesfield Lifestyle Group and Rossendale Trust.
17 species were seen and/or heard (H) including: cormorant, goosander, great crested grebe, great spotted woodpecker (H), grey heron, little grebe, mandarin duck, nuthatch and treecreeper.

Tuesday 17 April (8.00am to 10.30am) - Danes Moss Cheshire Wildlife Trust Reserve
12 people attended.
26 species seen and/or heard (H) and in particular:
blackcap, chiffchaff, jay, mistle thrush, reed bunting, song thrush, wheatear, willow warbler.
Fortunately some of the early summer migrants, in particular blackcap, chiffchaff and willow warbler, had arrived in time for the walk. Wheatear was an interesting, if somewhat unusual, sighting - most likely taking a rest while still en route for its summer territory in the Peak District.

Tuesday 24 April - Tegg's Nose Country Park (9.30am to 12.30pm)
30 people attended and 28 species were seen and/or heard (H) in particular:
mandarin duck, goosander, great crested grebe, green woodpecker (H), grey wagtail, blackcap, willow warbler, chiffchaff, common redstart, nuthatch, treecreeper, swallow, house martin, buzzard.
As usual there was a good list of bird sightings. However, there were no sightings of pied flycatcher and there was only a brief sighting of a single redstart by a small number of the group.

Thursday 26 April - Three Shire Heads (9.30am to 12.30pm)
23 people attended and 18 species were seen and/or heard (H) in particular:
red grouse, buzzard, kestrel, merlin, peregrine, golden plover (H), lapwing, curlew, wheatear, ring ouzel (2 males and 2 females), stonechat.
On the first part of the walk by Sparbent layby on the A54 Congleton/Buxton road golden plover were only heard and numbers of lapwing were much lower than in previous years. However, in the second part of the walk in the upper Dane Valley above Three Shire Heads the whole group had excellent and prolonged sightings of ring ouzel, wheatear and stonechat. A few lucky group members got a brief sighting of a merlin.

Tuesday 1 May - Birds of the Goyt Valley (7.00am to 10.00am)
18 people attended and 32 species were seen and/or heard (H) in particular:
coal tit, common redstart, common sandpiper (H), cuckoo, curlew (H), dipper, great spotted woodpecker (H), grey wagtail, jay, pied flycatcher, red grouse (H), treecreeper, tree pipit and willow warbler.
I arrived early and had an excellent sighting of a pair of cuckoos flying almost directly overhead from the far side of the reservoir, where the male had been calling, and into the woodland towards the remains of the site of Errwood Hall. The male continued to call for several minutes and was also heard by several other members of the group who arrived early.
During the walk we all had excellent, clear sightings of common redstart, pied flycatcher and a tree pipit, which included several superb songflights.
Alan Brereton