This article first appeared in the Annual Report of the Birmingham (latterly West Midland) Bird Club for 1937.
Bird and place names were spelt as shown.
The Bird-life in Sutton Park is becoming more interesting each year and, to one who is frequently observing, often very puzzling.
The increase of one species, the decrease of another, and the almost total absence of common species is, to use a modern term, "intriguing."
During 1937, Sutton Park passed through a normal season, that is to say, there were no abnormal fires which devastate large areas as in 1921 and, although the number of visitors was larger, the wilder parts of the park were left undisturbed.
Longmoor Pool and Bracebridge Pool are both out of the track of the usual "tripper."
The early part of the year was notable for the great influx of Goldcrests, Redwings, and Teal, followed later by Yellow Wagtail and Redshank.
The two latter species have been seen for several years but not until 1937 were they so noticeable.
Grasshopper Warblers were early and at least three pairs successfully bred.
The heathland fires in 1921 completely destroyed the nesting sites and these rare warblers were then absent for several years.
Spotted Flycatchers appear to haunt one sheltered coppice only and the Sand Martin, once so plentiful, is now almost gone.
One would expect to find an abundance of Cuckoos but, for some inexplicable reason, these birds are far from common.
Sparrow Hawks and Kestrels appear to be almost constant in their numbers and the same may be said of Carrion Crows, but Magpies are scarce now.
At Bracebridge and Powells Pools the Great Crested Grebe and Coot are to be seen, a few pairs of each, but they do not enjoy much peace and probably will not stay.
Hawfinches are entirely absent and Goldfinches extremely rare, but the Yellow Hammer is increasing rapidly.
In the woodlands the three species of Woodpeckers were seen during 1937 as were also the Long-eared and the Brown Owls. (The Little Owl does not appear to be in Sutton Park at present.)
Several nests of the Long-tailed Tit were observed and it is thought that these delightful birds are steadily increasing in numbers.
One would naturally expect, with large pools and wet moorland, ducks well represented and as previously mentioned, Teal were much in evidence, especially at Longmoor Pool, while during the year, Pochard, Wigeon, Shoveller, Garganey and, of course, Mallard, were observed.
Early in the year, the authorities gave permission to reduce the number of ducks, following complaints from anglers, but a vigorous protest from interested bird-lovers caused this permit to be hastily withdrawn.
In 1937, Sutton Park was still in the Royal Town of Sutton Coldfield, in Warwickshire, not becoming part of Birmingham and the West Midlands until the latter's formation, in 1974.
Ornithology in Staffordshire, Warwickshire, Worcestershire & the West Midlands county, since 1929.
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