As things are pretty quiet this time of year around my patch I decided to pop 10 miles or so down the road to the gravel pits around Grimley & Holt.
I started my visit at Holt 'Sling Pool' where the only birds of note were 4 Tufted Duck, 1 Grey Heron and 2 Mute Swans. A ♀ Great Spotted Woodpecker was on a nearby tree.
From Holt I headed to 'Top Barn Activity Pool' where 11 Tufted Duck, 2 Pochards (1♂) 2 Mute Swans and 37 Coots were present.
Next stop was the 'Island Pool' at the Grimley Old Workings. This pool was pretty quite with 2 Great Crested Grebes, 2 Grey Herons, 2 Mute Swans and a pair of Mallard noted.
From the old workings I popped to Wagon Wheel Lane pits. On arrival, a Great Spotted Woodpecker was drumming on a nearby tree. 3 Goldeneye (2♂), 13 Tufted Ducks and 2 Mute Swans were on the pits. 2 Linnets were along the waters edge. The flooded field between the pits and the River Severn was also very productive and produced a Barnacle Goose with c.100 Canada Geese, 19 Wigeon, 13 Gadwall, 25 Tufted Ducks, 2 Teal (1♂), c.40 Lapwing and c.100 Starlings. 2 Common Buzzards & a Kestrel were also seen in the Wagon Wheel Lane area.
My final stop off was at the Camp Lane pits (formerly known as the New Workings). From the Causeway I recorded 9 Shoveller (7♂), 9 Gadwall (6♂), 4 Teal (all ♂), 18 Pochard, 22 Tufted Duck, 3 Little Grebe, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 3 Mute Swans and a single ♀ Wigeon. Whilst at this location the Canada Geese and accompanying Barnacle Goose dropped in.
As I didn't manage to get any decent photos of the Goldeneyes, I've cheated and attached a photo that I took a couple of years back. Ive also added a couple of photos of the Barnacle Goose which shows the size difference between it and the Canada Geese. I know living in the Midlands this bird is probably a feral breeder or escapee but its a nice looking bird all the same.
Barnacle Goose - 11th February 2011: