Monday, 27 June 2011

House Martins

Monday 27th June
 Today has been a hot sunny day with the temperature reaching 25°C.
We have seen around 20 House Martins locally nesting in 4 or 5 spots and
flying overhead in the same area. Very difficult to get a snap of them in the
air but did mange a few snaps at one nest site.Don't know how this compares
to previous years but its good to see the presant ones flying about.

 As I was compiling this blog the birds outside seemed a bit noisey so I looked
out of the window, and on the bird feeder saw a Spotted Woodpecker. Luckily
my camera was to hand so I took a quick snap through the window, and quickly
went outside to get a better snap. As I half expected the Woodpecker saw me
coming and flew off, hope its not long before he returns.
House Martin

House Martin

House Martin

Spotted Woodpecker

Sunday, 26 June 2011

Redcar Tarn and St Ives

Sunday 26th June a.m.
 The day started bright and sunny with a temperature of 20°C, not the best
for birding as we're finding out,but still good to get out into the fresh air for
a walk round Radcar Tarn. Visibility in the sky was good giving a good view
of Ovenden windfarm,Queensbury and Soil Hill. On the water we saw the
expected species with a couple of Jackdaws on the bank.A couple of Lapwings
were in the nearby field.
30 - Mallards
12 - Tufted duck
8 - Coot plus chicks
4 - Moorhen
9 - BH Gull
2 - Lapwing
2 - Canadas with 4 chicks
 We then went to St. Ives which was much the same, there was no food at the hide
feeding station so again quiet after our recent good sightings here.
63 - Canadas
40 - Mallards
10 - Coot plus chicks
6 - Moorhen plus chicks
Redcar Tarn Keighley

Soil Hill from Redcar Tarn

Mallard with chicks



St Ives Coppice Pond

Saturday, 25 June 2011

Spoonbills at Blacktoft Sands

Saturday 25th June a.m.
Today started cloudy with drizzle falling and a temperature of 13°C, we had
heard there were Spoonbills at Blacktoft Sands and so set off in the hope of
seeing them. The cloud broke as we travelled East and there were some sunny
spells at Blacktoft although it did cloud over from time to time.
 We were told by the RSPB warden that the Spoonbills moved about behind the
Reed Beds on the lagoons and didn't always show, he mentioned he'd just seen
12 Spotted Redshank so we went to seek them out. We  found them where he said
but could not get any good pictures as the light was behind them and they just
appeared as a black shadow in their summer plumage. From the hide we saw our
first Sedge Warbler and the Marsh Harriers were flying in the distance.
  In the next hide we were pleased to see the Avocets again and also here were
20 Black-tailed Godwits along with the many Black-headed Gulls. The Spotted
Redshank also appeared and we got a little better snap.
  As we moved between the hides we also saw several Reed Warblers and 20 Swifts
overhead, at the feeding station were Tree Sparrows along with other usual species.
  The next hide we saw Shelduck,Tufted Duck with 8 chicks and several Mallards,
Coots and Moorhen.We also saw a Cormorant showing well on the island of one
lagoon and a Wren made an appearence infront of the hide.
   We had our lunch and then had a quick scan from the liklely hides for the elusive
Spoonbills. A Heron appeaed on the far side of the lagoon followed by a second
and soon after on the edge of the reeds we could see the Spoonbills. They seemed
very friendly with the Herons and showed for a while in the distance, so we could
get a few snaps. The Marsh Harriers were still flying in the distance and we also saw
a Kestrel hover above the reeds, a succesfull end to our day.

Avocet and Spotted Redshank

Black-tailed Godwit

Black-tailed Godwit

Marsh Harrier

Black-headed Gull


Tree Sparrow

Spotted Redshank


Cormorant with BH Gull

Sedge Warbler

Spoonbills and Heron

Sunday, 19 June 2011

Leeshaw Reservoir

Sunday 19th June p.m.
    The weather improved this afternoon with some bright spells,a bit windy
with a temperature of 14°C, so we paid a visit to Leeshaw reservoir near
Oxenhope.Here there were 20 Canadas,24 Greylag Geese,14 Lapwing,
20 Starlings flew over nearby,4 Swallowes,4 Oystercatcher,2 Common
Sandpiper,2 Pied Wagtail,1 Curlew nearby and 1 Cormorant on the water.
The Cormorant was some distance away so we could not get a good snap,
but some good sightings and well worth the visit.


Graylag Geese


Common Sandpiper


Common Sandpiper

Local Walk

Sunday 19th June a.m.
    This morning is cool and damp with drizzle or light rain falling the temperature
is about 9°C, so just a short walk with our dog to Hallas Bridge. Around here we
saw two or three Wrens near the bottom of a tree they seemed a little agitated. We
have not seen much of this common bird as they tend to keep out of sight, we got a
snap although not a good one, then through the tree we saw why the Wrens were on
the move a Jay had appeared! After watching a Jay take a Wren chick from its nest
on Springwatch they had good reason to keep out of its way. On the way home we saw
another Jay in a nearby field,3 House Sparrows,2 Swallowes and a Chaffinch.
   In the garden the Foxgloves are flowering well and our Kalmia shrub is just starting
to flower.

Jay upsetting the Wrens

Jay in nearby field


Kalmia Shrub


Saturday, 18 June 2011

St. Ives visit

Saturday 18th June a.m.
    This morning was dull and overcast with the temperature at 12°C and the
forecast rain did not come.We went to St.Ives where there were 60 canadas
on the Coppice pond, but no chicks.There were 40 Mallards with only a few
chicks,10 Coots one pair had 2 chicks,6 Moorhen again one pair with 2 chicks.
   We the went to the hide were we saw 6 Great Tits,4 Blue Tits,2 Jays,1 Magpie,
2 Robins,1 Nuthatch and 2 Great spotted Woodpecker which stayed around long
enough for some snaps.
Moorhen with chick




Great Spotted Woodpecker



Great Spotted Woodpecker

Thursday, 16 June 2011

Redcar Tarn Keighley

Wednesday 15th June p.m.
 Today has been a day of sunshine and showers with a very heavy shower around
4.30p.m. Afterwards it bightened up so we paid a quick visit to Redcar Tarn, there
were around 100 BH Gulls on the water and in the nearby fields along with 10 LBB
Gulls. There was about 20 Mallards plus chicks,10 Coots some with chicks,a pair of
Canadas with 4 chicks,10 Tufted Ducks,2 Moorhen,2 Mute Swans. On the island we
caught sight of a Wagtail, we think it was a White. The birds have had a good
breeding season at this location with there being many chicks The tufted Ducks
however don't look to have had any chicks. In the fields away from the Tarn we
saw 2 Lapwings,2 Meadow Pipits and 6 Curlew.

Canadas with chicks

Coot chicks

Meadow Pipit

White Wagtail



Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Garden Birds and Flowers

Tuesday 14th June
   Today has been a warm sunny day with the temperature reaching up to
18°C. There are more plants coming into flower including Geranium,Alchemilla
Mollis,Nigella and Flag Iris. My veg patch has some Onions doing very well, Spring
Onions developing well and Beetroot,Lettuce and Raddish seedlings coming through.
Today I planted some Carrots, there is also a Sunflower here which I hope will grow
tall. Our resident Song Thrush is still singing loudly early morning and late evening,
although it did have some competition from a Chaffinch. There have also been a few
Jackdaws about one briefly landing on the bird feeder.
My Veg Patch

Geranium,Alchemilla Mollis,Nigella and Flag Iris

Song Thrush and Chaffinch