Monday 16th Jo, one of the CVP rangers and I led a walk around Cuerden for one of the local WI groups. As we set off from the Barn about 12 greenfinches were calling right above us. It was a beautiful sunny day, if a little chilly. Several magpies chattered with robins and blue tits shouting at us on our way to the cinder path. Another scolding came from a great spotted woodpecker that was within 40 metres of us. As we walked under the yew trees on the Cinder Path goldcrests, carefully hidden in the smaller branches, challenged us to see them. Most of us were unsuccessful. Nuthatches and coal tits were heard but again unseen in Cock Cabin Wood. we continued to the lake and were delighted to see not only the usual Canada geese, mallards, coots, herring gulls in winter plumage and black-headed gulls but also a very smart male goosander
Progressing south we walked over the WI bridge and heard a lot of noise above us. A tree-creeper on a tree not too far away and a mixed flock of siskin and goldfinch were the cause of this. Searching the field just below Cam Cottage enabled us to see several common gulls feeding. Turning right here down towards the river meant we could the walk on the river bank upstream. We then crossed Town Brow to do a circuit of the southern section of Cuerden. It was fairly quiet here until we got to the ruins at Kem Mill when a pair of bullfinches gave their short whistle. It always surprises me how something so colourful can be so difficult to see. By this time we were on our homeward trek. Making our way along the cycle path ensured the return journey was much quicker. we paused at the bottom of the new path to view some very confiding roe deer. Lunch was beckoning so we continued up the path passing two jays and returned to the car park.