First visit

Hello-      anybody there?

I made my first visit to Coombes today, the first of many I hope. Wasn't really the best weather for it with a blizzard on but gave me a chance to find my way around and it looks a very nice reserve.There were not many birds showing around the reserve, all keeping their heads down out of the weather I think, but a large group of great tits, blue tits and chaffinches on the path away from the car park. Also included a nuthatch and I think a female pied flycatcher (not definite but about 90%). I'll give it a few weeks and hope for better weather but really looking forward to coming back.
  • Delve Deeper

    Hi Chris

    Glad you like the reserve.

    Coombes Valley requires a more patient approach to finding birds, than you might need at some of our larger wetland sites.  While I'm not saying bitterns are necessarily easy to find (!), those sites do offer a more 'in-your-face' bird spectacle. 

    Woodlands are always harder places to 'get to grips with' in bird terms.  For me though, that gives a real sense of adventure and discovery. 

    Best time for some of our star birds is mid May.  If you walk down the main track and stand in the open area nr the first bridge you can see pied flycatcher, redstart and spotted flycatcher all together.

    However, there is a wealth of wildlife here - 1100 species of beetle, 1400 species of fly, 553 species of butterfly and moth........

    Having worked at a number of places up and down the country, I can honestly say that I never fail to feel that when I walk into the reserve, I have escaped to a 'hidden gem' - a beautiful place.

    Hope you make it back


    Jarrod (Site Manager)


    Jarrod Sneyd

    Enjoying being the Site Manager of Leighton Moss and Morecambe Bay - Saving Nature in a unique landscape

  • In reply to Jarrod Sneyd, Site Manager:

    Hi Jarrod,

    I'm hoping to get down again this week. On first impressions I would agree about the reserve being a gem, one of those places where you get magic moments. usually when you're not expecting it. Had one in my local woods last week when I was watching a treecreeper climbing up a birch tree just as a pair of goldcrests flew cross to it.. I'm looking forward to getting a better look at the flycatchers after the glimpse I got last visit and redstarts are also a new species to me. Most of the sites I visit are wetlands around the trent so it's good to find something a bit different.