Broadstone Reservoir

Todays journey was out to the Broadstones area above Ingbirchworth for a look around the Heath area. The first 20 minutes were difficult with nothing around the heath but there were plenty of Black headed Gulls and Lapwings about, a single Herring Gull got my attention as it drifted overhead. Soon after a Kestrel came into view busy hunting over the heath, poor thing wasn’t having much luck in catching anything as it made numerous dives and was coming back up with nothing.

Slowly on towards the reservoir disturbing Blackbirds as I went giving off their alarm calls as they flew off, on getting closer to the reservoir I did notice a huge flock of lapwing as I approached it wasn’t all Lapwing as I looked thru the flock, numerous Golden Plover and Starlings were with them making their way into the fields away from the reservoir.

Out on the reservoir were numerous ducks mainly Wigeon, Mallard, Gadwall, Pochard, Cormorant and a single Swan which turned out to be a young Whooper, nice surprise. Moving back towards the heath Blackbirds and a Mistle Thrush were in a nearby tree, back on the heath I finally found the bird I was looking for today, there wasn’t one but a pair of Stonechat flitting about the gorse bushes and doing that typical position on top of the bushes, a nice ending to a couple of hours

Video of the walk can be seen HERE

List of Birds seen :- Blackbird, Cormorant, Gadwall, Golden Plover, Kestrel, Lapwing, Mallard, Mistle Thrush, Pochard, Starling, Stonechat ♂♀, Whooper Swan, Wigeon


We were away for a weekend in Filey, one of our favourite places and a found myself with a few hours to myself. I set off from the apartment and headed towards the Brigg, on the beach as I walked down were a lot of Black headed Gulls, Herring Gulls and the odd Common Gull. At the start of the Brigg a few waders were hunting amongst the seaweed, these were mainly Turnstones, Oystercatchers and Redshank.

Along the Brigg a few Rock Pipits joined me on my walk with a pair of Kestrels hunting the step slopes of the Brigg riding into the now windy conditions and occasionally dropping down into the grass. At the Brigg end a few Cormorants were hanging out, a few auk species on the sea and a handful of Gannets flying past.

The walk back consisted of going up the path on the side of the Brigg, along carr naze catching the coast path going past the rocket pole and down the long lane hedge,  finally down Arndale ravine with little reward.

Stopped off then in Filey for dinner after which I grapped the car and ended up at Filey Dams. My first stop was to the small hide to the right of the car park, but there was someone in, so keeping my distance I headed slowly back hoping to catch maybe a Common Darter in the late sun, it wasn’t too be, I did find however picked up on its distintive “tsu-weet” call and then finally seen. The pale yellowish eyebrow easily picked up along with the paler long wingbar the smaller wingbar a bit harder to pick up the sure signs of  the Yellow browed Warbler. A very active warbler about the size of a Goldcrest this one being in a party of Long tailed Tits a migratory species at this time of year with a few records yearly and always a nice find.

After that excitement I decided on going onto Bempton Cliffs in the vain hope of owls. The viewing platforms were the first port of call with me constantly scanning the fields only picking up Linnets and Goldfinch. On the cliffs could still be seen a few Gannets and Kittiwakes but very little else.  I then headed back towards the visitor centre when I suddenly stopped near the Mosey Downgate viewpoint as a bird had landed on the fencing, it was a Black Redstart another nice surprise for the day, I did try for a photo but I wasn’t quick enough it was soon away.
Back at the visitor centre a few people were hanging out around the back where views of a Short eared Owl had just being seen but had now flown over the hill, I gave it 45 mins but it didn’t reappear, neither did the Barn Owl.
The day was over not lots to see but two nice surprises for the day, and good to be out.

List for the Day :- Black Redstart, Blackbird, Black headed Gull, Blue Tit, Crow, Common Gull, Coot, Cormorant, Fieldfare, Gadwall, Gannet, Goldfinch, Great Black backed Gull, Grey Heron, Yellow browed warbler, Herring Gull, Jackdaw, Kestrel, Kittiwake, Lesser Black backed Gull, Linnet, Long tailed Tit, Magpie, Mallard, Moorhen, Oystercatcher, Redshank, Redwing, Robin, Rock Dove/Feral Pigeon, Rock Pipit, Shag, Shoveler, Starling, Stock Dove, Teal, Tree Sparrow, Turnstone, Wigeon, Woodpigen, Wren (41)

A Ponds Visit

Another sunny day and another visit down to my local ponds, on my way there I was getting a bit disheartened due to the lack of insects to be seen but that was soon to chance.

I firstly went down to a pond I don’t usually visit, scarred up a female Pheasant and young along with a Lapwing, when my heart had settled I managed to find a Couple of Common Darters on the pond, one was fairly settled on a reed and was using it to hunt from, also here were a couple of Green Woodpeckers “Yaffling” from the nearby trees after watching for 20 minutes I moved on.

I found myself by a couple of my favourite ponds where again there were a few more Common Darters about along with a couple of Emperor Dragonfly and Emerald Damselflies. On another nearby pond another I don’t usually visit had a Hawker species flying around never settling I never got to find out which one but was thinking Southern or Common.

Other highlights were Small Heath Butterfly, Silver Y Moth and a Field Grasshopper

The Days List :- Common Buzzard, Green Woodpecker, Lapwing, Stock Dove, Gatekeeper, Green veined White, Large White, Meadow Brown, Peacock, Small Heath, Small White, Speckled Wood, Blue tailed Damselfly, Brown Hawker, Common Darter, Emerald Damselfly, Emperor, Silver Y Moth



Emerald Damselfly



Field Grasshopper

Video of the Day can be viewed HERE

Photos of the Day can be seen HERE



North Cave Wetlands

A day out with the full day at one of Yorkshires top sites, look on my sites tab for the location.

Arrived at 10am with the day being scheduled hopefully to find Black tailed Skimmer and photograph one.

Set off down Dryham Lane to many Common Darters along the hedges with a few Blue tailed Damselfly, but the nicest surprise was finding a single Small Copper Butterfly, my first of the year.

I stopped off at the Crosslands hide where I saw the splendid sight of eight Little Egrets feeding in the channels.

I then made my way to around the Carp Lake where once again there were lots of Common Darters a few Ruddy Darter along with a single Southern Hawker, lots of Blue tailed Damselfly, Azure Damselfly and a few Common Blue Damselflies. After much searching and patience I finally found a Black tailed Skimmer, or did it find me as it flew past and settled nearby but then was soon off alas with out me capturing it on film, I never saw another all day.

Another first for the year encounter was a Brown Argus Butterfly which was in close proximity of a couple of Common Blue Butterflies so was a great opportunity to compare the two species

Other bird highlights for me today were Common Terns, Black tailed Godwit and Oystercatchers

Birds List :- Black headed Gull, Black tailed Godwit, Crow, Common Tern, Coot, Cormorant, Gadwall, Great Crested Grebe, Greylag Goose, Lapwing, Little Egret, Mallard, Moorhen, Mute Swan, Oystercatcher, Tufted Duck, Woodpigeon

Butterflies :- Brown Argus, Common Blue, Gatekeeper, Green veined White, Meadow Brown, Peacock, Ringlet, Small Copper, Small White, Speckled Wood

Dragonflies :- Black tailed Skimmer, Blue tailed Damselfly, Brown Hawker, Common Blue Damselfly, Common Darter, Emperor, Ruddy Darter, Southern Hawker

Moth :- Shaded broad Bar

Sphaerophoria interrupta Hoverfly-08364_edited-1

Sphaerophoria scripta Hoverfly

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Ruddy Darter

Video of the day can be viewed HERE

More Photos can be seen HERE

Local Ponds

Now in week 31 of the year and week 19 of lockdown. Been a few week since I was out, mainly due to weather,  so it was sunny so I decided on another visit out to the ponds.

There was a few butterfly species about but nothing new , Ringlets and Meadow Browns are still around but looking rather tatty, Small Skippers, Small Tortiseshell, Small Heath, and Gatekeeper were seen.

Dragonfly were harder to find with only singles of Brown Hawker, Common Blue and Emerald Damselflies

Marmalade Hoverfly

Episyrphus balteatus Hoverfly









More Photos at my Flickr HERE  or Video of the event HERE

Lockdown 12

Week 29 now week 17 of the lockdown measures although restrictions are slowly lifting with pubs, cafes and Restaurants opening.

We ventured out to the coast to a favourite place if ours, Filey. Our first pretty off call was Filey Dams where we saw, Black headed Gulls, Canada Geese, Grey Heron, Little Grebe , and a handful of Dunlin.

We moved on to the country park and had a gentle stroll around, off the brigg we saw Gannet, Puffin, Razorbill, Fulmar, Kittwake, Guillemot and Shag.

We called in at Bempton Cliffs mainly for the spectacle of the seabird city and wasn’t disappointed we saw all the usual as we did in Filey, but these were much closer. Tree Sparrow and Linnet were added for the day.

Puffin Video  HERE

Local Ponds

Still in lockdown and week 28 of the year, I had some free time so ventured out to the local quarry where there is a system of ponds and hopefully bag a few Dragonflies.
Walking down a pick up a few butterflies namely Meadow Brown,  Peacock, Green veined White, Ringlet, Small Heath and a new one for the year Gatekeepers were now out.
Out at the ponds Emperor Dragonfly were still around along with Blue tailed Damselfly but new for the year were Brown Hawkers and Emerald Damselflies.
Moths seen were Narrow bordered five spot Burnet, Silver Y, Shaded broad Bar and a Straw Dot

Video of the Day  HERE


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Straw Dot Moth


Lockdown 11

Still in week 26 of the year and week 14 of the lockdown and I was having another day out to get my Common Blue Butterflies this time to a new site over near North Cave.

Arriving on site at Kiplingcotes Chalk Pit car park (Location) at around 10am and parking to the sound of a Yellowhammer was a warm welcome, a quick snack and I was off.

A was soon picking up butterflies species on way to the pit, Red Admirals, and Meadow Browns, the walk is along an old railway line lined with flowers, a few hoverflies were seen here Pied Hoverfly being one.

On site I could see plenty of Marbled White Butterflies about and a few great photo opportunities. Common Blue was on site but not settling, need a lot of patience today I think to catch these. During the walk around the site I picked up on Small Tortoiseshell, Ringlet, Large White Butterflies and Moths were Cinnabar, Narrow bordered Five Spot Burnet and Silver Y’s


Common Blue Butterfly-

Common Blue Butterfly

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Marbled White Butterfly

That was Kiplingcotes I was heading home but found myself passing North cave Wetlands so popped in (Car Park Location), well had to really. So off looking for Dragonflies and Damselflies it would be nice to final catch up with a Black tailed Skimmer here (it wasn’t to be). Damselflies were about Blue tailed and Common Blue Damselflies were the ones I found, the larger dragonflies were Broad Bodied Chaser, Four Spotted Chaser and Emperor Dragonfly. One of the highlights was a Twin lobed Deer fly of which I got lucky with, it landed on my hand but it wasn’t till after I took the photo that I saw it was a female (these can give a nasty bite).

Birds seen around NCW were…. Black headed Gull, Cettis Warbler, Coot, Greylag Goose, Lesser Whitethroat, Moorhen, Redshank, Reed Bunting, Sand Martin, Sedge Warbler, Shelduck, redshank, Swallow and tufted Duck

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Twin lobed Deer Fly

More photos can be seen at my Flick Account HERE

and a video diary of the day at my You Tube Channel HERE

Lockdown 10

Week 26 of the year, week 14 of the Lockdown with things still slowly being lifted but the big changes will come on the 4th of July when the Pubs, Restaurants etc will be opening and people once again coming closer together.

Out again the and out to lockdown site No2 for more Dragonflies. My first find on site were Common Green Grasshoppers, so a nice little macro shot of that. Nearer to the ponds I came across Ringlet, Meadow Brown, Small Heath and Large White Butterflies.

On the ponds were Broad Bodied Chaser, Emperor dragonfly and finally a Four Spotted Chaser put it was around the edges on the vegetation I was more interested in with all the Damselflies settling now and again, a great macro opportunity of Common Blue, Blue tailed, Azure and Large Red Damselflies

Other highlights around the ponds were Cinnabar Moth and Cinnabar Moth Catapillars, Latticed Heath Moth and a Tipula lateralis Cranefly

More Photos can be seen at my Flickr site HERE

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Common Blue Damselflies

Lockdown 9

Week 25 of the year and week 13 of the Lockdown, still furloughed, so with sun shining I decided on a all but brief visit out to one of my lockdown sites for a look around for Common Blue Butterflies.

There were a few of the common butterflies around (Large Skipper, Small Skipper, Small Tortoiseshell) and now Ringlet and Meadow Browns were being prominent but alas no Common Blue

Moths around were a few Silver Y Moths, Narrow bordered Five Spotted Burnet Moth, Latticed Heath and a nice find was a Yarrow Plume Moth

Tansy Plume Moth

Yarrow Plume Moth