Our September work task was in the sun at Staindale and we also welcomed new volunteer Lucy. For the first hour, we cut back and cleared the bird feeding area and erected a new sightings white board. We then crossed to the other side of the lake to block up a path that was eroding the dam and cleared the almost hidden steps to encourage their use. The steps appear to have been railway sleepers and we were intrigued to know where they came from!
Pics courtesy of Rob, our treasurer, who came along later on a bike ride and Judith F, although most of us had gone by the time we remembered to say cheese!
It has been a good year for the birds of Staindale Lake feeding station. Not only has the area been given a spruce up and up-grade, there has been a very obvious increase in the number of birds using the area. The Friends have improved the area and there are numerous Blue, Great, Coal and Marsh Tits, in numbers so high they seem to be all around the feeders get filled! There are lots of Chaffinches, which more than once, have been joined by Bramblings. Greenfinches, Robins and Blackbirds. Siskin numbers are also up on the year before too, and Nuthatches and Great Spotted Woodpeckers are frequent visitors.
In the summer months, you are almost sure to see Warblers, including Lesser Whitethroats and Willow Warblers and the iconic Chiffchaff. On the lake, a Kingfisher has been hunting , and there are lots of Bullfinches and Jays. The Winter saw visits by Yellowhammers and a Goldcrest.
The amount of visitors who have approached Lindsay whilst filling the feeders, are aften asking about the birdlife and complimenting the area.
During the 2018/9 winter, accessing the area was an issue. Troublesome snow and ice persisted for quite a while, making it impossible for us to get to the birds when they would have desperately needed the help most! However, despite the cold conditions, when we finally managed to get up to the lake safely, there were plenty of birds all around, and so most managed to make it.
We now have two new bird tables now and a feeding arch full of different feeders. This year we added Nyger feeders to possibly attract Redpoll and they certainly are attracting Siskins. We have yet to record Redpoll, but always keep a look out!
We are considering adding a low barrier across the area where currently cars pull right in and are hoping to put a seat there instead to allow visitors to stop, sit and watch the birds.