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BREEDING SEASON EXCLUSIONS.

As of now through the duration of the breeding season all schedule one birds , red status birds and birds of a sensitive nature to this area will be omitted from the blog or reported as undisclosed site due to the widespread persecution of nesting birds by unscrupulous parties including game keepers and egg collectors.
Any of the above species that are obviously on passage through the area will be reported as normal.
This also applies to wildlife such as Roe Deer, Badger and Hares which are badly under threat from poaching and long dogging in the area at present and unfortunately this exclusion of wildlife will have to continue throughout the year.
Just another sign of the times.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Ringby Top and Wheatear influx

        Plenty Chaffinch Ringby Lane bottom
                       Brambling  gone
               

 This bird was flying and eating but looked
                                      in poor shape.
             Ringby Top, corvids fill the air
         A mixture of Herring and LBB gulls >W
                                     Copper Chopper
          Plenty Wheatear in the quarry.







  Local LBB gulls already on egg and chick patrol.





Started the long hike up to Ringby Top at 1600 hrs in bright but breezy conditions with a W>5 blowing on the summit. I was on 2nd shift today with DJS just on his way down as I was going up so after a few words we set off in our opposite directions.
                                                              Things were quiet on the top with the usual sky full of corvids whilst several Herring and LBB gull headed >W with 4 LBB gulls present throughout .
A check of the Yellow Wagtail field found it now over grown but the next field on looked promising and worth keeping an eye on. Today it held 4 Wheatear and several Mipits.
                                                                     Luckily a check in the quarry saved the afternoon with a count of 7 more Wheatear and a small flock of 5 Linnet. A male Blackbird gave me the run around thinking Ring Ouzel until it finally showed itself fully to dash my hopes.
On the way home 2 more Wheatear were spotted in Taylor Lane and 3 at the bottom of Perseverance Road near to the YW building.
                                                                      So finally things are buzzing with a count of :-
15 Common Sandpiper this weekend and 38 Wheatear.
A text this morning from the Angela/Gary team reported a single Swift over Pickering. My earliest sighting of Swift is 30/04/ 2012 over Queensbury thought AC had one on the 26/04/2012 at Cold Edge Dams.
BS

FLY FLATTS, Buzzing

           Alive with Common Sandpipers
                                        At least 11 present
                 Wheatears piling through, minimum of 18



           Theres no hiding from Big Bertha.!








                        Very limited shoreline




0700hrs- 1945hrs at Fly Flatts in a stiff, cold W>5 dropping W>3 mid watch . Clear blue sunny skies.

Migrants had piled in overnight with 11 Common Sandpipers counted just at the south end and midway along the west bank. Probably several more at the north end as well as Wheatear which gave me a minimum count of 18 covering the same area. The Common Sands were very fidgety with limited shoreline so most were on the west bank cobbles or around the boathouse area until the wind surfers began to arrive.
                                   3 Oystercatchers were noisy before moving off towards Cold Edge whilst several Curlew and Lapwing were present.
BS

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Cold Edge Dams

                      2 Common Sandpiper back at Cold Edge Dams



                                         1 of 3 Oystercatchers

1600 hrs at Cold Edge Dams in a bright but breezy W>4 with some dark clouds.
The goose field just held 3 Canadas and 2 Redshank whilst 2 Greylag were near the mill pond.
                                                           The resident Little Grebe, now in full summer plumage, was on the Spring Dam along with a female Tufted duck whilst a  female Stonechat was flitting about close by.
Common Sandpipers had returned to Leadbeater dam with 2 present along with 2 pr Mallard and a male Reed Bunting on the island. Otherwise it was down to Curlews, 4 LBB gulls, 1 Golden Plover and 3 Lapwing.
                        A check on Taylor Lane on the way home for JLs  Ring Ouzel failed to re locate it.
Thanks for the call John.
BS

Friday, April 21, 2017

Slaughter Gap, Raggalds Flood

                                         8 Golden plover at Nolstar






                Female Ring Ouzel, Slaughter Gap
  Very elusive timid bird at distance


             1pr Pied Wagtail, Raggalds Flood
              One of 3 Little Ringed Plovers


                                    The usual 2 Redshank

                            2 of 3 Little Ringed Plover

                                           The 3rd LRP

1300 hrs and 2 hours to kill waiting for Ollie and Pippa to have their 6 weekly make over off Pellon Lane so it seemed like an ideal time to check out Slaughter Gap for Ring Ouzel and/or Redstart.
                                                             The Nolstar field held 8 Golden Plover and 3 Wheatear on my way down but no sign of either on my return.
Not ideal conditions with heavy showers moving over but drying up mid watch.
The trees down in the Gap were quiet with just Mipits and 1 Jay with several Corvids, Curlews and Lapwings overhead.     Three parts down the track a very distant Ring Ouzel appeared in the trees well up the hillside and in the sun so it meant a scramble up the steep bank to get it out of the sun but even then after half a dozen record shots it disappeared over the ridge not to be re located. I couldnt tell on site but going off the photos it was a female bird meaning a different bird from NKs male at Hunter Hill yesterday whilst DJS got another female near the old Withens this afternoon.
                                                                Distressing to walk the moor at this time of year to see the number of dead sheep and small lambs around with at least 8 sheep, which had probably died lambing and 4 small lambs just a few days old. 1 small lamb was calling trying to get back to its mother after it had managed to get to the wrong side of the fencing so after 20 minutes of struggling I managed to re unite them and good to see it dash straight on to feed. Good job Im not a farmer, Id be on the moor day and night keeping watch.
                                                                     Dogs picked up and delivered home so just time to check the flood with a surprise of now 3 Little Ringed Plovers plus the usual 2 Redshanks. Got to get a Yellow Wagtail at this location soon.
BS