Field Trip Report – Forest of Dean – 23rd Feb 2024

Leader and report –  Tom Rogers. Photos by Dave Newman.

The leader was joined by 19 members plus 2 non members from Cardiff. On further inquiry I ascertained that the 2 persons from Cardiff learned of the trip from accessing the national RSPB website. I didn’t realize that all our local trips were advertised nationally.

The weather was to start with, dry and overcast though showers were forecast for later in the day of which we were to experience. Around the car park bird activity consisted of good numbers of Blue and Great Tits plus a fly through Buzzard. As we entered the woodland a Song Thrush was spotted feeding on the ground. Further along hanging above the path is a large stained-glass window which is part of the forest of Dean’s Sculpture trail.     

On reaching Crabtree area a flock of Siskins were seen feeding in an Alder tree. Then a we saw a flyover of a flock of Goosander heading for Woorgreens lake I suspected. From Crabtree Hill we descended towards Drybrook Road Station to look for Crossbills that were seen on the recce. Unfortunately none were seen here though we had a good view of a female Bullfinch feeding on the ground.

However on the way back up to Crabtree Hill a flock of Crossbills were seen and heard flying over plus a Treecreeper was located by one member.

Lunch was then taken at Cannop Ponds where more birds were added to the days listing.

After lunch we walked alongside the Ponds to the Stoneworks where feeders were erected. On the feeders there was good numbers of birds including Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Blue, Coal and Great Tits plus a male Siskin. While on the lake there was a pair of Goosanders and good numbers of Mandarin ducks which obviously breed in the forest. Close to the end of the day I finally located a bird I was hoping to see that being a Marsh Tit.

The total number of birds seen and heard was 40, [TR].

Birds

Blue Tit                                                                  Little Grebe

Blackbird                                                               Lesser Black-Backed Gull

Bullfinch                                                                Long Tailed Tit

Buzzard                                                                 Mallard

Carrion Crow                                                        Mandarin Duck

Chaffinch                                                               Marsh Tit

Coal Tit                                                                  Mistle Thrush

Coot                                                                       Moorhen

Crossbill                                                                Mute Swan

Dunnock                                                                Nuthatch

Goldcrest                                                               Raven                                         

Goldfinch                                                               Redwing                                                  

Goosander                                                            Robin  

Great Spotted Woodpecker                               Siskin

Great Tit                                                                Song Thrush   

Greenfinch                                                            Sparrowhawk

Greylag Goose                                                      Treecreeper

Grey Heron                                                            Tufted Duck

Grey Wagtail                                                         Wood Pigeon

Jay                                                                          Wren