Worcestershire Record No. 27 November 2009 p. 32


Steve Davies

I volunteered to cover tetrad SO86W at Droitwich for the ongoing Bird Atlas 2007/11 project organised by the British Trust for Ornithology (BTO). Basically a stock-take of birds within each tetrad, the fieldworker is required to take a sample from each habitat type present within the tetrad counting all birds encountered using the habitat. Two visits in both winter and the breeding season are requirements of the methodology. It is the late breeding season visit that I made on 9th July 2009 that this article records.

As a representative sample of canal habitat, I decided to record along the Droitwich Canal from SO894636 to SO882624. This stretch was of approximately two kilometres in length, and for much of its course is heavily vegetated on both sides of the watercourse. It appeared to be ideal habitat for Reed Warblers. It was not long before I recorded numerous male Reed Warblers singing against each other, thus holding permanent territories. I counted 17 singing male Reed Warblers by the end of this section of canal. I was fortunate enough to record confirmed breeding evidence for this species as I observed an adult with food entering canalside vegetation and heard the begging calls of young in the nest.

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