Off to a new start in a new year with Potteric Carr being the first reserve of the new year. Potteric is a good place to try to get a few common species under the belt, highlights as always are the Willow Tit at the willow pool hide, we also added Lesser Redpoll. Fairburn Ings was visited this month with the highlights being Nuthatch, Brambling and Tree Sparrow. The end of the month saw us on a Christmas Pressie weekend stay in London were Red Kite was the attraction, we even had a few over the hotel, the other highlight were Ring necked Parakeets.
The start of the month saw me around the local patch reservoirs were the highlight bird was Little Grebe. Old Moor is always a favourite reserve and we travelled here twice during the month and as always had a good selection of birds, Waxwing, Sparrowhawk, Goldeneye, Redshank, Yellowhammer and Brambling all stand out. A journey further afield this month and to a reserve I hadn’t been too in a while Attenborough Nature Reserve, here we had great views of Bittern as it made its way around the reeds. Goldcrest, Goosander and Egyptian Goose were other highlights of the day.
Having skipped a month we made up for it this month with 3 visits to Old Moor highlights this month were the return of Mediterranean Gull along with a small trickle of summer migrants Sand Martins, had started to arrive at the being of the month but by the end of the month most warblers had returned Blackcap, Whitethroat, Lesser Whitethroat, Reed Warbler, Sedge Warbler, Willow Warbler and Chiffchaff were all back in. We also had another weekend away this month and this one was around the Rutland Water area where the highlights here were Ospreys, Buzzard, Little Ringed Plover, Willow Tit and Little Egrets. This month was also good for the emergence of butterflies, Brimstone, Comma, Small Tortoiseshell, Large White, Peacock
6th of May saw us at Old Moor RSPB catching up on the now present warblers Sedge, Reed, Whitethroat, Willow, Chiffchaff along with Ringed and Little Ringed Plovers, Redshank and Dunlin
The bank holiday weekend when we spent at Leighton Moss, a great weekend seeing lots of interesting stuff highlights being, Duke of Burgundy Butterfly, Broad bodied Chaser (Dragonfly), Peregrine Falcon, Common Buzzard, Avocets, Cettis Warbler and much more.
The 1st of June was a photography day spent with ADB shooting butterflies, Dingy Skipper, Brimstone, Small Copper and damselflies, Azure, Common Blue and Large Red.
The 8th was at Bulcliffe Colliery along with Small Heath, Dingy Skipper Butterflies, Clouded Border and Small Yellow Underwing Moths, Four Spotted Chasers, Large Red and Azure Damselflies.
The 30th was at our local ponds to try and find some dragonflies but to no avail, Common Whitethroat, Chiffchaff, Common Carpet Moths were the highlights
The first outing of the month was to Tophill Low Nature Reserve were we had a walk around the reserve on the wardens morning walk, this was very informative and we got to know the reserve a bit better, highlights were Golden bloomed Grey Longhorn Beetle with many Ringlet and Meadow Brown Butterflies, damselflies were Azure and Common Blue.
The 13th saw us again at Old Moor RSPB were we saw many Damselflies, Dragonflies and Butterflies along with a good selection of birds
From the 30th we were back at Rutland Water for the weekend staying at the Stables Cottage for a great weekend thanks to the continuing warm weather
Bit of a quiter month only going out twice the first being to the local reserve at Bullcliffe Colliery on the 2nd picking up a few common butterflies and moths highlight being a Hairy Sheildbug. On the 31st we were back at Old Moor RSPB looking at Common Darters and Common Hawker Dragonflies but the highlight of the day went to the birds with a Spoonbill and a Night Heron
We were on annual leave in Dorset where we spent two week at the Grays Cottage Toller Pocorum were the highlights were the moths due to me taking the new moth trap, full visit here
The 16th saw us back at Old Moor RSPB it was a quiet day seeing mostly common birds
A busier month with the 14th seeing me at Sands Lane picking up the Great Northern Diver and then on to Old Moor RSPB. The 28th around the Ingbirchworth area mopping up on a few local patch birds Fieldfare, Redwing, Little Owl. The year ended with a lifer at the Broomhead Reservoir on the 30th with Two barred Crossbill