RSPB Walsall Local Group
a million voices for nature
19 June 2002
We retuned to this popular venue for our summer meeting, on a fine and warn evening. Our advance publicity in the press and on posters paid off as we welcomed three new faces to the group and one who had only been to one indoor meeting.
Parking at the Free Trade Inn, we made our way to the canal bridge, a Grade II listed building, where we had good views of Yellowhammer.
Dropping down and moving alongside the field we heard, and then saw, a Garden Warbler singing in an Elderberry tree. Further on we found a clearing where Greenfinch, Whitethroat and Dunnock were all singing well.
Reaching the end of the path we scanned across the fields and picked out a pair of Jays flying back and forth along a hedge. Eventually they were joined by three others, presumably two adults and their brood. From here, we returned to the canal and found a male Blackcap and several more Yellowhammer. A Cuckoo was heard calling in the distance.
The Common is the site of an old iron works and has acidic areas where coal spoil lies and lime- rich soil where uncommon, lime- loving pants can be found in summer. Two such plants we found were Marsh Orchid ad three individual Bee Orchids.
In our two- hour walk we only covered a small part of the 137 acre (55.4 hectares) common; anyone wishing to visit should park opposite the Free Trade Inn, Wood Lane, off the A 4124. Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council provide an excellent introductory leaflet with a map showing points of interest. They also have a web page about the Common*.
Mike Pittaway (Field Trips Organiser)
Birds seen on the walk were: