Bakewell Bird Study Group visit to Middleton Lakes RSPB Reserve – Thursday 4 April 2024, 10.00 to 15.30


The Middleton Lakes RSPB reserve comprises a mosaic of wetlands, meadows and woodland in the Tame valley, near Tamworth.  The morning was cloudy with a few spots of rain but the cloud broke up and there were some brief sunny intervals in the afternoon.  Most of the group travelled there with Stewart Abbott of Derbyshire Bird Tours; others by car.  Parts of the reserve were quite muddy following the rain of recent months.

There was plenty of activity around the feeders near the entrance, including Greenfinch, Goldfinch and House Sparrow.  The heronry was busy too, with both Grey Heron and Little Egret present.  More noisy was the rookery a little further on.

A pair of Treecreepers were busy nest-building in a crevice behind bark that had partially peeled away from the trunk of a tree.   Their hard work was being partially negated by a Great Tit that was throwing out nest material stored in the same crevice.  A lone Red-breasted Goose (normally a winter visitor) was seen feeding among a flock of Canada Geese in a field and a Bittern was heard booming occasionally, hidden somewhere in the reeds.

Overall there was a good selection of species, though we were somewhat short on waders – perhaps because water levels in the lagoons were higher than usual.

Members participating:    13

Bird list (48 species seen and/or heard)

Little Grebe Buzzard Cetti’s Warbler
Great Crested Grebe Pheasant Blackcap
Cormorant Moorhen Chiffchaff
Bittern Coot Blue Tit
Little Egret Oyster Catcher Great Tit
Grey Heron Lapwing Nuthatch
Mute Swan Black-headed Gull Treecreeper
Greylag Goose Lesser Black-backed Gull Magpie
Canada Goose Woodpigeon Jackdaw
Red-breasted Goose Great Spotted Woodpecker Rook
Shelduck Swallow Carrion Crow
Teal Wren House Sparrow
Mallard Dunnock Chaffinch
Shoveler Robin Greenfinch
Tufted Duck Blackbird Goldfinch
Goosander Song Thrush Reed Bunting

Great Tit raiding Treecreeper nest, credit Martyn Grandy

Dunnock by Chris Byrne

Heronry by Martyn Grandy

Nuthatch by Martyn Grandy

Usual suspects by Martyn Grandy

Red-breasted Goose by Chris Byrne