BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

On a bike, riding somewhere. Every day, rain or shine.

Posts tagged ‘nest’

#365daysofbiking Supervision

April 17th – Near Newtown, just near the A5 bridge on the canal, another wonderful sign of spring on a grey afternoon: The swans are nesting here.

This is the first nest I’ve seen in this spot and I think it’s probably the mystery couple from last year who suddenly seemed to appear with hatched chicks, which I think had been incubated in a nest out of sight behind a moored boat.

I noted one bird was supervising while the other did the work. I have no doubt that if the one watching could have folded its wings, it would have done…

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#365daysofbiking A place of safety

July 22nd – In the middle of the canal at Catshill Junction, in the midst of the algae mat, a mother proudly sits on a nest. A nest built upon driftwood flotsam trapped in the algae.

I’ve been watching her a few days. You can see trails in the surface from her partner coming to feed her, or take his shift sitting.

Safe from foxes and other land predators, this moorhen mum’s got a relatively secure nest.

It’ll be interesting to see how this develops!

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#365daysofbiking Waiting peacefully

April 9th – A run on the canal through Pleck and Bentley Bridge to check on the nesting swan couple at the former Anson Arm. I needn’t have worried. She was fast asleep in comfort and he was on patrol, threatening to peck my feet on the opposite bank.

This pair usually have small clutches. When the long wait is over, it’ll be interesting to watch them develop this year, as ever.

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May 3rd – Nearby, in Pleck, a sight curiously not seen often, which is odd considering the proliferation of Canada geese: A nest being sat by a parent. Interestingly, unlike a swan nest, I could see no obvious partner nearby. 

The sitter seemed comfortable, but the nest was much smaller than that of a swan. 

It’s be interesting to see when the new arrivals make an appearance. I’d guess they’ll be hatching soon.

May 2nd – A dreadful, rain-sodden and intemperate morning commute – possibly my worst ever set me up for a lousy day. But things got better, slowly, and when I returned, the sun came out.

Coming back on the canal, heading to Brownhills I noticed that a WalsalL Wood resident near the canalside have had a resident take possession of part of their garden, who will hopefully soon have a little family.

What a wonderful thing to have in your garden – perhaps not so much if you plan on getting out there, though…

My only concern is that nest is awfully vulnerable to beer fox…

March 23rd – Passing through Brownhills in the morning, I paid a call on the Watermead swan couple. Not sure if there are any eggs yet, but the nest is looking good and a bird is clearly sitting.

I look forward to watching another batch of cygnets thrive and grow. Exciting times!

June 16th – This poor, out of focus photo shows something I was very surprised and quite lucky to find – a lapwing chick.

There were two of these long-leeged wee birds in the middle of Bullmoor Lane, and my approach scattered them into the margins of the road. The shrieking above alerted me to the presence of the parents, and after a quick phot, I left well alone.

These curious, ground-nesting birds will be fine and it’s hard to believe these lanky, spotty wee balls of fluff grow into the elegant, wheeling aerial acrobats that their parents are.

A treat on a warm summer afternoon.

May 5th On the way home I took the canal from Darlaston, in the hope of avoiding the worst of the wind. Nearing the factories near Pratts Mill Bridge, I noticed this swan, ostensibly asleep but clearly monitoring me on the far side of the canal, nurturing it’s clutch of eggs.

I wonder if it’s the swan couple that in previous years have nested in the old Gasworks Arm and Anson Junction in Pleck? No sign of them up there this year. Hopefully I’ll be able to catch sight of one of the parents leg-rings soon and find out for sure.

April 23rd – On the canal at Hopwas, a swan nest. The male was stood on the towpath, alternately preening and scolding passers by, while his partner, safely atop the nest on the opposite bank fussed and turned her three eggs to just the right position before settling back down to watch and wait once more.

Swans are such truculent, fascinating birds.