Latest update: 1st April 2013
External Links: Council Information Goggle Map Friends of Millers Pond
Millers Pond is a small four acre park in Shirley surrounded by housing, main
entrance in Shirley Way,
south of the Wickham Road,
best parking in Worcester Close (CR0 8HT for satnavs) on the east side of the park.
The park was
acquired by the council in the 1930s, and is well looked after by the Friends of
Millers Pond. It is very popular with dog
walkers and families, and the vast number of water fowl on such a small pond suggest the locals keep them well fed.
Older Photos of Millers Pond - 2011
15th January 2012, ice covers the far end of the lake, but two thirds is ice
free, lots of Mallards, Canada Geese, Coots and sea birds.
A Grey Heron is watching from the island.
Ducks and geese following us around the large island looking for food.
Wider view of the pond and the small island.
A Moorhen on the edge of the ice.
4th February 2012, the ice coverage has reversed, the far end of the pond is
now ice free and the area around the islands in ice bound.
Several Mallards eating bread thrown onto the ice, but slipping easily.
The Canada Geese also walking on the ice.
While the far end of the pond has an ice free part, but still iced nearer to
the camera, although the ice is dropping underwater as the
birds climb onto it.
Some of the Canada Geese have abandoned the water for the small park itself.
6th April 2012, first time we have seen Mandarin ducks at the pond, at least
two mating pairs and other boys. The males are very
colourful with a lot of orange feathers, the female Mandarin in the centre of the photo looks more like a Mallard female with a grey speckled
lowe half, but a smooth brown top half.
A Mandarin male and female.
Wider view of the pond with Canada Geese, Mallards and the Mandarins left of the photo swimming away.
The Mallards are getting restless while I take photos of the Mandarins, and
come looking for food. The birds at the pond eat two loaves
of bread on each of our visits, and would take more if given.
A Muscovy duck on the island.
Canada Goose sitting on her nest on the island.
Otherwise of the pond, Canada Geese looking for more food.
The Mandarin ducks again, with Mallards in the foreground.
The beach area of the pond.
29th April 2012, the pond is relatively quiet, all the sea birds have left.
29th April 2012, six Canada Geese goslings with their parents on the grass at Millers Pond, probably a few days old.
The parents are very protective and very noisy when other geese coming looking for the food we've given them.
I wonder if their nest was within this planting area? For the goslings
to have reached this part of the lawn, they could only have left
the pond by the beach area since they can not fly, and that is on the far side of the pond, a long walk away.
Looks like there will be more goslings to come, three or more eggs in a nest on the island.
After seven inches of rain in April, the grass is sodden, but the ducks and geese don't care as they follow us looking for food.
While we walked one way around the pond, the Canada Goose family has walked
the opposite way and the adults have just jumped into the water
leaving six goslings stranded on the path.
The first of six goslings jumps into the water watched by the parents.
Quickly followed by the other five goslings, and they all swim off.
Safety in numbers, a seagull or crow could easily grab a gosling from the water, given the chance.
Several more Canada Geese on the pond, with a new duck house in the distance.
The Canada Goose family again, eating bread in the water.
6th May 2012, the ducks and geese are hungry again, and jump out of the water looking for food.
Another goose nest on the small island, can not tell how many eggs.
Just below the goose nest above is a Coot nest with at least one young Coot being fed by mother.
On the large island, can no longer see any eggs in the nest although mother
was still hovering until she got hungry, the eggs may
still be there but the nest is now built higher.
By the pond beach area, a single Mandarin duck is looking for food, and not being very successful with all the other ducks and geese.
And a few moments later, 10 goslings arrive from the water, walking right up
to me looking for food. Last weekend there were only six,
so it seems another family of four have joined them (perhaps hatched from the eggs we saw last weekend).
Very hard to tell which goslings belong to which parents, they are just one large group now. But they are all feeding themselves already.
The 10 goslings and their mothers again.
The Muscovy ducks has also been following us around the pond, with two unusually coloured ducks, probably Mallards.
The Mandarin duck has finally got some bread.
With all the food finished, the goslings head back for the water.
But then change their minds and head off onto the grass, with the Mandarin duck still eating.
One heron on the large island in the distance, not sure if the new duck house is used yet, not seen any ducklings this year.
7th May 2012, lots of hungry birds heading our way for food.
Quite a few still on the small island, including a goose on her nest.
All 10 goslings (from two families) are still waiting on the grass.
But get very lively when they realise breakfast has arrived. The puddles are drying out, May is a little drier than April.
And now nibbling away at duck pellets, a couple of feet away from me.
After food, the mothers sit down near the pond edge, watched by the Muscovy duck and a Moorhen.
Back in the main pond, the solitary Mandarin duck we saw yesterday is still
here with his mate, who perhaps has been sitting on a
The Mandarin pair again.
And an almost top shot from the pond edge of the Mandarins.
On the small island, the two Coots are engaged in nest building, while their
single chick sits in the nest. This seems to comprise
stealing twigs and feathers from the gooses nest five feet away, notice how all the twigs on one side of the nest hole are missing.
The geese have the strength to break off tree branches, it's harder for the Coots.
The Coots piling goose feathers into their nest, on top of their chick.
The Coot chick's reddish head can just be seen looking out of the nest.
13th May 2012, a sunny day at the pond for a change, less action on the water, but a lot on the grass.
The goslings are now about two weeks old, still two families living together
but one is lost so now only nine in total. Very tame, head
straight towards me for food.
The original gosling family again, 20 feet away is a new third family, photos below, but they don't mix.
After breakfast, the goslings all settle down for a rest, with the protective adults keeping everyone away.
But they don't rest for long, before the adults lead them into the water.
And they all swim to the other side of the pond.
The two combined families, four adults and nine goslings, they briefly climb
onto the small island behind, but then swim back to the
other side of the pond where they started.
Looking across Millers Pond so the entrance from Worcester Close.
As well as the geese families, there is now a family of Mallard ducklings.
10 ducklings with mother, less than one week old, a good number for Mallards.
They try to eat bread, but not the duck pellets,
perhaps not familiar with them yet.
The ducklings again with various geese, Mallards and the Muscovy Duck.
A new third family of goslings has appeared, just four which is about the
usual number, less than a week old. They don't mix with
earlier two families who are one or two weeks older.
The third family of goslings is also not quite as tame, keeping their distance.
The new family also takes to the water for a short swim around the beach area.
Another Canada Goose is still sitting on a nest, so perhaps there will be fourth family for our next visit.
The Coot chick is still in the nest after a week, perhaps they don't swim as
quickly as goslings and ducklings, with the parents still
actively nest building.
Another view across the pond, the better weather means a lot more people are out feeding the ducks and geese.
20th May 2012, early visit and almost every water fowl heads our way for
breakfast, including the original Geese family that has lost
one more gosling during the last week so is now eight, but getting quite large already.
They are joined by the Mallard family, also one less than last week, with
ducklings and goslings all mixed up here, goslings are
lighter colour and larger. This is the first time all the goslings and ducklings have swum across the pond together to be fed, previously
we've had to go looking for them.
The second Geese family joins the rest for breakfast, sadly also missing missing one goslings, now down to three.
On the small island, the goose is either sitting on eggs or protecting what's
left of her nest from the Coots whose nest keeps getting
larger. Their chick is now on the water, but perhaps there are more eggs.
All the water fowl are following us around the pond, waiting for more food.
These three ducks were initially on the grass the other side of the path
where they were fed, but while feeding birds in the water from
the viewing platform, they've crept up beside me looking for more food.
The far side of the pond, they are still following us and eating duck pellets, ducklings just arriving.
Now the goslings have joined us.
When not looking for food, the Mallard family has found a quiet corner of the pond to rest.
Until they get disturbed by the geese.
27th May 2012, the Canada Goose family comes looking for food.
The Coot and Canada Goose are still nesting on the island.
And once the goslings have finished eating, they all move onto the island as well, getting large now.
Further around the pond, the Mallard family is still here, just swimming back to their corner.
The ducklings reach the beach area, about three or four weeks old.
3rd June 2012, the ducks head our way from the pond as we enter the park gate
looking for food, perhaps they recognise the loaf
of bread I was carrying.
Today, this side of the pond is all ducks, no geese in sight, we later find them all on the grass. The ducklings are heading our way.
Four or more male Mallards trying to mate with the same female, who is
underneath. It's late in the season now, only a couple more
weeks before it's too late to start laying eggs this year.
One of the Coots gets too close to the goose, still sitting on her eggs.
Lots of Canada Geese on the grass, including the three families we've been
following. The mother on the right has three goslings,
although it's strange one is larger than the other two. There are now seven massive goslings in the combined family, about the size
of ducks already.
All now feeding.
The seven ducklings are now back in their favourite corner of the pond, and are large enough to jump up onto this ledge.
But back in the pond as the geese arrive.
10th June 2012, two Mallards came to meet us at the park gate, perhaps they recognise a loaf of bread? Still eating here.
Numerous geese coming for food, including several large goslings.
The goslings are now larger than ducks, still eight of them from two families.
The geese are eating duck pellets.
The ducklings are also growing.
The other goose family on the large island.
And now coming for food.
Hard to believe they are a single family, with the difference in size of the goslings.
The Coots are still nesting on the small island.
While the goslings are back on the island as well, not the grass today.
All the food has been eaten, but they are waiting for the next visitors to the park.
24th June 2012, after only six or seven weeks, the Mallard ducklings are now
fully grown, all speckled brown but slightly darker than
mother. They will not be flying yet, but not sure if they will really want to leave this pond even when they can fly (unlike my garden).
The geese have seen us feeding and head our way. The Canada Geese
goslings born in late April are now fully grown in only two
months and hard to tell from adults, just a little more fluffy.
There are still three goslings from the third family in mid May, but they
seem to be growing much more slowly than the other families,
two goslings are still very small.
A Moorhen studying the Coot nest, the Canada Goose seems to have abandoned it's nest.
Canada Geese still following us around the pond.
And now on to the beach area, two of the three goslings.
The pond is still very lively.
8th July 2012, only a single goose on the pond today, and most of the Mallard
males are losing their grey and brown feathers and
looking like females or grown ducklings.
The Muscovy duck is still here.
A Moorhen appears to have taken up residence in the new duck house.
Found all the Canada Geese on the grass.
All heading our way as soon as the realise breakfast has arrived, the three goslings leading the rampage, and one Mallard.
It's been two weeks since we last saw the goslings, and they have grown
rapidly in that time, one is almost adult sized, just behind
the other two that are more obviously goslings.
Still hungry, the three goslings at my feet, in the mud. Very heavy rain overnight again.
17th July 2012, the geese see some-one has come to feed them.
Including this lot who were sunbathing on the small lawn.
A mix of Canada Geese and Mallards having breakfast.
Very busy around on the beach, more Mallards and geese eating duck pellets.
The Canada Goose family, growing larger each day, one chick by my fee, then the larger one and the second smaller one.
Still a lot of geese here.
As we walk around the end of the pond, the geese and ducks swim over from the beach area for more food.
While a Moorhen watches from her nest.
Still hungry, the whole lot are following us around the pond. One the fluffy
geese in the foreground, lots of male Mallards that have
lost their grey feathers and some fully grown ducklings, who are darkest.
29th July 2012, the pond is very quiet today, most of the Canada Geese seem
to have flown away, about a dozen left, with a lot of
The Canada Goose family is still together, the parents and three fluffy ones
I've been photographing for the last eight weeks, and they
are virtually fully grown now.
A few geese on the small island, and a Mallard looking at the old Coot nest which seems to be abandoned.
5th August 2012, a good mix of Mallards and Canada Geese, and a few Moorhens.
The Muscovy duck is still here, left of photo.
Everyone is swimming away from us, very unusual, must be someone else feeding them around the corner.
19th August 2012, hottest day of the year so come early, but not a large number of birds.
The Moorhen has been doing some major nest building in her floating nest box, no idea how she moved those branches.
26th August 2012, large numbers of Mallards this week.
Eating duck pellets. the boys are starting to regrow their grey feathers.
A lot more Mallards waiting around on the beach.
Hungry as always.
A lot of splashing from the Canada Geese, probably the family of three goslings testing their wings and learning to fly.
9th September, the pond is very quiet, the geese have all flown off somewhere
else, just a few Mallards and Moorhens. They were
not hungry either, lots of people feeding few ducks.
Rarely see the pond deserted.
22nd September, the Canada Geese are back from their holiday, lots of Mallards as well.
All very hungry today as well, a goose pecking at my feet, Mallards waiting for more food.
The male Mallards have mostly got their winter coloured feather back.
The geese are still hungry.
Lucy has found a new friend Jason, who follows her around the grass, slowly, both are elderly.
This beach was deserted last time we were here, much busier today.
30th September 2012, mostly Mallards today, very few Canada Geese.
The Moorhens seems happy in their new bird house.
A few Canada Geese and the Muscovy Duck around at the beach, and a single Mandarin duck centre of the picture facing the camera.
The Mandarin Duck again, no mate this time, and not seen again, probably gone back to Kelsey Park a couple of miles north.
7th October 2012, very quiet today.
(More Mallards near the small island.
Four Canada Geese on the grass.
21st October 2012, busier again, everyone is following us the pond.
And now around to the beach.
28th October 2012, Grey Heron fishing, and the Herring Gulls have returned for the winter.
The Gulls make it much hard to feed the Moorhens since they fight for the food.
There seem to be more Mallards than ever, must be plenty of food here.
November 2012, even more Herring Gulls, everyone is very friendly towards anyone with food.
The Canada Geese are pecking at my legs.
And follow me up into the park.
The whitish Muscovy Duck seems to have a darker companion, larger than a Mallard, perhaps a cross between Mallard and Muscovy.
Followed us around to the beach.
The park is very muddy, it's been a damp month.
December 2012, sun is low in the sky so some photos seem washed out. Mostly Mallards and Gulls now.
Waiting patiently for food.
This hound followed me around the whole pond eating bread, while it's owner was always on the opposite side of the pond.
Several Mallards cliimb up the bank to be fed.
A Herring Gull, one of many noisy Gulls.
23rd December 2012, plenty of Mallards and Canada Geese here today, and gulls.
All of whom seem very hungry so come out of the pond looking for food.
Coots and Mallards near the large island.
30th December 2012, don't often see swans at this pond, only one though.
The swan is hungry and follows us around the pond.
Taking a peck at geese that try to take it's food.
The small island, bare in the winter.
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