It was a beautiful sunny Easter morning, 7a.m, and a group of intrepid birders ventured to Knowsley Safari Park. All were welcomed with chocolate bunnies and mini eggs to begin the walk on a full stomach. John Bannon, local bird expert, led the way, and dished out bird guides and binoculars. We strolled along the road listening to the early morning bird calls, John identified the warble of the Grasshopper warbler (left), the easily recognisable drumming of the Great Spotted woodpecker and some ‘small brown jobs’…Whitethroats (below) singing their little hearts out. It is springtime and the males are vying for territory and looking for mates. Migrating birds are beginning to arrive so the air was full of birdsong…and the occasional roar of a lion waking up. The group meandered into Trapwood, a typical English woodland with ancient oaks with twisted trunks and gnarled bark. Dappled light shone through and more bird delights flitted among the branches catching breakfast, long tailed tits, and a multitude of Redpoll. A guest spotted woodpecker holes and possible Tawny Owl nest holes in a dead tree trunk. We hoped to flush out some Woodcock or Snipe but these cryptic birds were nowhere to be seen. An hour and a half later we returned to the car park for a refreshing drink. The Cape Buffalo were quite perturbed by these early visitors walking passed their paddock. We raised a few more pounds for Knowsley’s designated Charity, Save the Rhino, and look forward to our second bird walk on the 22nd May around the Mizzy Lake and Woodland Walk.
We hope our future events will be equally as successful, and to see you all there! See www.knowsleysafariexperience.co.uk for future events
For further information regarding British Trust for Ornithology see www.bto.org
Bird seen and heard!
Lesser Redpoll 12+ (right)
Grasshopper Warbler 3
Willow Warbler 6
Reed Bunting 3
Gt Spotted Woodpecker 2
Also Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long-tailed Tit, Robin, Dunnock, Goldfinch, Chaffinch, Pied Wagtail, Kestrel, Blackbird, Song Thrush, Wren, Tufted Duck and later on Mizzy Dam also Little Grebe, Coot, Canada Goose, Barnacle Goose, Great Crested Grebe, Moorhen. Lapwing and Mistle Thrush.