Trip reports

Midweek Walk - Graves Park

Goosander on water

Wednesday, 12 December 2018

Even in a city with so many parks, Graves Park stands out as one of larger ones and so a good place to see birds and other wildlife.

We met up near the Rose Garden Cafe on a cloudy and quite breezy day - perhaps not surprising for early December.

Heading down through a wooded valley, we picked up quite a few woodland birds including Wren, Dunnock, Robin, Blackbird, Great Tit, Coal Tit, Blue Tit, Long-tailed Tit, Nuthatch and Treecreeper - the last two of these being initially picked up from their calls. As we were watching these, one of the group saw a Raven flying high overhead. Also picked up initially from their calls were a number of Ring-necked Parakeets and we got a good view of two of these as we climbed up out of the woodlands.

Emerging onto open ground, we were somewhat surprised to see a Snipe flying quickly across in front of us. Apart from this, the grassland areas were relatively bird-less with just Black-headed Gulls and the occasional Pied Wagtail.

The chain of lakes held Canada Goose, Mallard, Tufted Duck, Moorhen, Coot and, most excitingly, Goosander - of which we all got good views. From the dam of the lowest of lakes we also got good views of a Mistle Thrush perched in a nearby tree.

After exploring the site of the old nursery, where we saw Bullfinch and Goldfinch, we headed back across the lakes. Our walk finished at Graves Park Animal Farm where we saw an Eagle Owl and a variety of other 'exotic' birds. If only we could have legitimately added those to our lists!

34 bird species seen
Star Bird: Ring-necked Parakeet


Full list of birds seen:
Blackbird
Black-headed Gull
Blue Tit
Bullfinch
Canada Goose
Chaffinch
Coal Tit
Collared Dove
Common Snipe
Coot
Crow
Dunnock
Feral Pigeon
Goldfinch
Goosander
Great Tit
House Sparrow
Jackdaw
Jay
Long-tailed Tit
Magpie
Mallard
Mistle Thrush
Moorhen
Nuthatch
Pied Wagtail
Raven
Redwing
Ring-necked Parakeet
Robin
Treecreeper
Tufted Duck
Wood Pigeon
Wren