Sunday, 18 February 2018

Queensbury Circular

A definite touch of Spring in the air when I left the house at approx 0830 hrs. Birds singing across the frog included a Bullfinch; it's been a while since the last one.

At Mountain a Skylark was singing in the same field that held c25 Lapwing, 1 Pied Wagtail, a few Jackdaw & Starling. Raggalds Flood produced 13 Lapwing a Pied Wagtail and a couple of small gulls.

Soil Hell turned up 7 singing Skylark, 5 Mall Dullard, 1 each Lapwing & Moorhen, 4 Blackbird, 2 Chaffinch, 1 Greenfinch & 3 Roe Deer. A Curlew was heard calling from way out west, probably twixt Withens and Warley Moor.

Old Guy Rd at 1100 hrs saw the skies grey over and a SW'ly blow spring up. There were 19 Common Gull on the cricket pitch, 1 singing Skylark in the fields along with a 100 or so Starling on the wires. House Sparrows continue to do well at Fox Hill.

Saturday, 17 February 2018

A Birding Apocalypse

The year is 2032 and the dearth of birds in the Queensbury township and beyond has increased dramatically. There have been some serious knock on effects as these reports from citizens illustrate.

Garden birds are so scarce now that 43 pet shops throughout West Yorkshire  have gone out of business as sales of bird food and feeders have hit rock bottom.

Bizarrely those birds that still hang on in have no fear of predators so much so that Jonas Snert of The Mansion in Small Page Fold plays videos of Sparrowhawks daily in order to reinstate fitness levels of Great Tits, Chaffinches, Blackbirds etc. He further explains: The birds now lounge about on branches or on the grass all day and have become grossly overweight. I found that playing raptor videos gets them off their arses and flying again.

Mr & Mrs Pugh-Tridd of Tapir Close report their cat has lost it's predatory instinct having not seen birds for many years to such a degree they saw it climb a tree with a fledgling Goldfinch in it's jaws and put it back in the nest it had dropped out of.

This sad story of avian depletion is widespread throughout Yorkshire. Albert Snildge of Cockroach Way laments his trips to Scarborough have lost their magic now that the gull numbers have been reduced. He says I used to eat fish n chips on the front and the buggers used to land on my head and pinch em. What fun I had when I whipped out my baseball bat and clocked a few of em. Now all I can do with my time is try and get the Mrs to wear Gull outfits...

Thursday, 15 February 2018

Windy Queensbury South

Littlemoor Park approx 1040 hrs;  surprisingly rather busy given the NW'ly blast.
4 Greenfinch ditto LTT, 3 Blackbird, 1 Bullfinch ditto Chaffinch, 4/5 Goldfinch, Blue & Gt Tits. My first Song Trush of the year gave 4 loud trial notes before calling it a day.

The walk from there to the trailer park fields produced just a few BHG & a couple of Common gulls - all down to the wind.
The a/m fields held c22 Lapwing, c60 Starling, 2 Redwing, 1 Fieldfare and a few more small gulls.

Wednesday, 14 February 2018

A Queensbury Garden.

H Nigel,

Only the usual suspects here for a long time. No Bramblings since December; Bullfinch and Nuthatch daily; Treecreeper every so often; 3 Redwings last week.  Of more interest, a single Siskin in today.


How timely Denise given my previous cynical post 😏

Tuesday, 13 February 2018

Ode to a Birding Wilderness

A Dungeness birder called Terry
Boasted he'd find rare birds in Queensbury
After a week in our hills he took stimulant pills
Then ran all the way home in a hurry. 😭

Birders came from far and wide looking for a thrill.
So feeling rather nasty I sent them up Soil Hill
3 months came and went and I never heard a word
Then I got a message saying We ain't seen a single bird, you turd. 💩

Monday, 12 February 2018

Hollingworth Lake

An overwhelming compulsion for the Glaucous Gull got me out of the hovel this morning and on the way to Littleborough.
Took me a while to sort out the location and when I finally found its favourite haunt it was down to the waiting game.

Some 35 mins on and a large pale Gull suddenly appeared among the numerous small ones and an adult LBBG. No mistaking this cracker it seemed to glow in the sunlight!
Others: Herring Gull, 3 Mute Swan, couple GCG, 5 Goosander, c21 Cormorant including a white headed punk rocker.

Friday, 9 February 2018

Queensbury to Horton Bank CP

A raw windy morning but with more than a fair portion of bird activity.
Littlemoor Park: Bullfinch pr, Coal Tit, Blue/Gt Tits, 3 Chaffinch, 4 Blackbird, few Goldfinch.
8 Redwing were in a field at top of Giles Hill Lane and I got lucky when a dog flushed a Snipe from a field in Soaper Lane. Lots of BHG generally with a few Common Gulls thrown in.

Horton Bank Country Park, half the size of Ogden but with twice the appeal.
5 Mute Swan, 1 Grey Heron, 4 drake Goosander, c9 Moorhen, c13 Coot, 1 each Tufted Duck & 1st Winter Lazy Black-backed Gull plus small gulls mainly BHG.

Come Spring I'll be watching this place as the Phragmites reed bed is looking really healthy.

Wednesday, 7 February 2018

Mytholmroyd Canal Walk

Messes Messrs DW et DM were on the canal back to Halifax this morning and they got some decent birds e.g a Kingfisher at Copley and a seemingly emaciated Little Grebe elsewhere. The bird, despite it's underweight appearance kept diving frequently. Makes you think how much these freezing temperatures are affecting the well being of wildlife.

4 photoes by DW

Meanwhile one of my 3 viewers sent me this fascinating photo which took me 3 attempts to work out. Amazing!

Same Old Route

I was hoping for some cold weather movement today and I got some; it was cold and I was moving. A glorious sunny day for walking if not so for birds although there was one exception.
A Rook was on a lamp post at Raggalds with a Pied Wagtail and a Greenfinch or two up Persecution Rd. Soil Hill was fit for passage only.

A Kingfisher was fishing up by the Ogden Clough bridge and I managed a few dodgy photos of it perched in a waterside bush. Others: 1 Lazy Black-backed Gull, 4 Pheasant, 2 Chaffinch, Robin and the Yawn gang.

Mixenden Res was partially frozen and I managed to pull 2 Herring Gull out of the multitude of small 'uns on the ice.

Cormorants were down to 3 same as the long staying Goldeneye which haven't got any tamer. There were also 6 Canada and ditto Dullards present.

Monday, 5 February 2018

Ogden and Mixenden

Ogden 1055 hrs just the usual dross. Passerines down to 2 Blackbird, 3 Robin & a Great Tit. Work being carried out on the promenade.

Mixenden fared better I got a Raven over from the Withens area heading towards the reservoir. On the drink were 3 Goldeneye, 5 Cormorant and numerous gulls. A Treecreeper was flitting through the Alders with a couple Goldcrest while 1 Mistle Thrush & c20 Redwing were in the conifers.
A Canada Goose was on the pond at Stod Fold with a Kestrel perched nearby. 4 dead sheep were gracing the fields and track.

Lowestoft Herring Gull Details

I have received some interesting information this morning from the ringing group about this bird.

Click on this link for details.

One of the Turnstones I saw was not only a one legged individual but it was bearing a metal leg ring - see the bottom photo.

I suppose it was easy for the ringer to catch up with 🐤😁

Sunday, 4 February 2018

Yarmouth Photos 30th January

Great Big Bad Gull

Golden Plovers

Med Gulls with 2 BHG on right

Redshank with 3 Dunlin

Thursday, 1 February 2018


A bright sunny cold day and mainly calm. Birding was hard work and also taking into account last year's visit I'm of the opinion that sea watching here is very poor.

Among the gulls was an adult Mediterranean and an Herring Gull bearing Orange ring H7LT on the left leg. I'll report this to the ringers within the next 3 days hopefully.
Others were down to 5/6 Cormorant, 4 Turnstone, 2 Blackbird & 1 Greenfinch (Get Greenfinch in before they go the way of the Yellowhammer).

Back in Yarmouth I witnessed my first Starling murmuration in a number of years at 1640 hrs outside the Wetherspoons. I'm sure it would have been much bigger had I seen it after a bucket of beer as opposed to my first taster.