Monthly Archives: January 2014

Horbury Wyke

Out on the local Patch this Morning at Horbury Wyke it was cold, dull, grey and overcast not the ideal day for the new Sigma 150-500mm lens a couple of photos were managed but the ISO was very high, anyway the birds.

Horbury Wyke runs along side of the river calder and includes some filter beds on the nearby Yorkshire Water plant. The birds today on the river included cormorant, Grey Heron, Moorhen, Mallard, Goldeneye ♂ ♀, Goosander ♂, Little Grebe, Mute Swan (1), in the bushes and trees I found Jay, Goldcrest, Long tailed Tit, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Chaffinch and Bullfinch, on the filter beds plenty of Black headed Gulls and Pied Wagtails and a zipping thru Sparrowhawk. Finally arriving by the railway bridge where there is a few horse fields I picked up a few thrush species Mistle Thrush, Redwing and Blackbirds along with Starling and a large flock of Goldfinch where I also found a single Treecreeper

Goldcrest

Goldcrest

Old Moor RSPB

Back to somewhere familar and this time I had a new toy along with me a new lens a Sigma 150-500 f5-6.3 DG OS HSM, I have only had this lens 3 days but in the short time that I have used it I have loved every minute. Okay it’s big and heavy but seeing the pictures that come out of the camera compensates for it, its lovely and silent, it’s not quick to focus, at the moment I have no problem taking pictures handheld, time will speak for itself, at the moment I love it.

Bact to the birds and the car park feeders are always the first port of call, here we saw Tree Sparrow, Greenfinch, Brambling, Dunnock, Collard Dove, Blackbird, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Chaffinch.

In the reserve we skipped the garden hide (full) and walked up to the family hide for our first port of call. From here we saw Black headed Gulls, Common Gulls, Lesser Black backed Gulls, Little Grebe, Wigeon, Gadwall, Goldeneye (1♀), Cormorant, Lapwing, Starling, Canada Goose, and Tufted Duck.

On then to the furthest hide and Wath Ings and here we saw more of the same Canada Geese, Tufted Duck, Gadwall, Wigeon, Teal. We came back via the Wader Scrap hide where we saw plenty of Goosander, Shovelers, Goldeneyes (♂ and ♀), it was here that we saw a Common Buzzard fly over towards the field pool area.

Calling in at the Tree Sparrow farm we added Yellowhammer and Bullinch

The day list in no order :-

Greenfinch, Chaffinch, Brambling, Linnet, Bullfinch, Tree Sparrow, Yellowhammer, Dunnock, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Long tailed Tit, Woodpigeon, Collard Dove, Robin, Blackbird, Common Buzzard, Crow, Lapwing, Mute Swan, Mallard, Wigeon, Teal, Pochard, Shoveler, Gadwall, Tufted Duck, Goosander, Goldeneye, Lesser Black backed Gull, Common Gull, Black headed Gull, Cormorant, Little Grebe, Great Crested Grebe, Moorhen, Coot, Canada Goose, Jackdaw, Magpie, Pheasant

Black headed Gulls

Coming into Land

Sands Lane

I had the chance this weekend of a quick tour around Sands Lane, Mirfield where the Great Northern Diver [Video] is still present, this bird is easily viewed from the roadside were good views can be had, along with Great Crested Grebe, Tufted Duck, Mallard, Coot, Mute Swan, and  Black headed Gulls.

With some looking smaller birds could be found around the bridleway Dunnocks. Blue Tit, Great Tit, , Blackbirds and Goldfinch were all seen, a good couple of hours early morning walk.

Budby Common

A day out to a new venue (I hope to be throwing in more new venues this year) Sherwood Forest or Budby Common. We found it to be a well run place with good facilities and places to eat.

The birds were good straight from the start in the car park, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Blue Tit, Great Tit and Nuthatch (these are plenty here), however these were not our quarry for today the birds we had come to see were about an hours walk away from here on the common. The birds were good on our journey thru the forest we saw plenty of Great Tit, Blue Tit, Dunnock, Robin, Blackbirds, Coal Tit and Chaffinch, there were bird tables scattered thru out the forest were you got views of these birds we even got close to Marsh Tit. We finally got to the place were the birds where, after going thru mud and puddles, and it wasn’t long before we had a first views of the Parrot Crossbills thanks to the gathered crowd. A lifer for me so we stayed a while had dinner a watched the birds antics, the bill is much heavier and shorter than the common crossbill, giving it that Parrot look, the bird is also bigger than the Common Crossbill, with the plumage being the same, the birds breed in the Pine Forests of North West Europe into Russia, with a very small population in Scotland. The status in the UK are a rare migratory breeder, Amber Status, with only a few records per year (collins bird guide 2nd Edition) (RSPB Info)

Site at SK617689 (N53.213675 / W-1.077270)

The Day List :-

Woodpigeon, Carrion Crow, Jacdaw, Common Buzzard, Sparrowhawk, Kestrel, Marsh Tit, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Coal Tit, Long tailed Tit, Chaffinch, Robin, Blackbird, Dunnock, Treecreeper, Nuthatch, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Parrot Crossbill, Rook, Rock Dove/Feral Pigeon

Blackbird

Blackbird

Potteric Carr

Potteric Carr the YWT flagship reserve has under gone a change with a new updated tearoom..but no bacon butties 😦 but the birds were good. At the willow pool hide the usual assortment of birds could be seen around the feeders..Chaffinch, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Coal Tit, Willow Tit, Moorhen, Reed Bunting, Dunnock, Robin and don’t forget the Squirrels.

From Piper Marsh Hide we had a splendid time with a Marsh Harrier for a good five minutes hunting over the reeds (flushing up a few Common Snipe) before flying off towards the Field Centre area.

On the Huxter Wells ponds plenty of duck Pochard, Tufted Duck, Teal, Shoveler, Shelduck, Mallard and Gadwall.

Along the trials we saw Goldcrest, Long tailed Tit, Reed Bunting, Blackbird, Treecreeper, Bullfinch.

It wasn’t till the last moment that we eventually saw a Lesser Redpoll mixed in with a flock of Goldfinch along the Mother Drain road (this is now open to the public)

Day List in no order:-

Bullfinch, Chaffinch, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Coal Tit, Willow Tit, Long tailed Tit, Blackbird, Robin, Treecreeper, Reed Bunting, Mallard, Teal, Shoveler, Moorhen, Coot, Pheasant. Dunnock, Cormorant, Magpie, Goldfinch, Common Snipe, Grey Heron, Gadwall, Shelduck, Marsh Harrier, Carrion Crow, Black headed Gull, Herring Gull, Pochard, Goldcrest, Tufted Duck

Common Snipe

Common Snipe

A New Start

A new year starts and so do the lists once again, so to get the birds of to a start I decided on a trip down to Sands Lane to see the now long staying Great Northern Diver and also to get the year off to a good start. It was still present and once again out in the middle of the lake so not a very good photo opportunity, along with the diver were Great Crested Grebes, Mallards, Black headed Gulls, Common Gulls, Cormorants, Canada and Greylag Geese a flock of Goldfinch (charming), a Grey Heron stuck in one corner standing waiting, a male Goosander on the nearby river.

A journey then up to Ingbirchworth res to see if the swans were still about but alas not Black headed Gull, Common Gull, Tufted Duck, Mallard and Little Grebe were the only things that graced the water