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BREEDING SEASON EXCLUSIONS.

As of now through the duration of the breeding season all schedule one birds , red status birds and birds of a sensitive nature to this area will be omitted from the blog or reported as undisclosed site due to the widespread persecution of nesting birds by unscrupulous parties including game keepers and egg collectors.
Any of the above species that are obviously on passage through the area will be reported as normal.
This also applies to wildlife such as Roe Deer, Badger and Hares which are badly under threat from poaching and long dogging in the area at present and unfortunately this exclusion of wildlife will have to continue throughout the year.
Just another sign of the times.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Mipits galore

Meadow Pipits were piling over from first light this morning all >S and again in flocks of up to 20 getting down to smaller flocks by 0730 then trickling over in singles until cut off at around 0945hrs.
A small group of 5 Siskin went >SW at 0745 along with up to 11 Skylarks >W and at lunch time several Chaffinch were in trees around Foxhill park, something we don,t normally see.
This evening 1850hrs 9 Golden Plover flew >NW over Shelf Moor heading towards Ringby, probably to roost on the tops.
BS

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Queensbury Today

Tonights Foxhill sky

A much quieter day today with very little signs of movement. Even at first light only a handful of Mipits came over although I have,nt checked other blogs for reports as yet other than Pinkies were seen over Northowram again this a,m, ( Calderbirds ).
A second wave of Mipits should be due but probably not until this hot spell has passed.
At midday 3 Alba wags came over >W along with a very high Kestrel >SW which which had the jizz of a mover and this evening at last light a squirrel dashed across the park then over fields towards Old Guy Rd which is a rare sighting for this area so probably also a mover.
BS
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Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Pipits and Pinkies

A better moving morning today with Meadow Pipits heading >S in flocks of 12 + from first light and continuing on until 0915 when the temperature soared and the sky was blue putting a stop to the job. Once the flies appear migration is taken over with feeding.
Several reports of Pink Footed geese were coming to my phone from various sources and all together 7 Skeins were reported to me, some from Calderdale, Northowram, Shelf Moor, Thornton and Clayton, none over the garage unfortunately.
By midday the bright blue skies were quiet although a party of 4 Jays >W was a lunch break bonus.
 See DJS s report on Calderbirds.
BS

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

More Foxhill Skies






Meadow Pipits were again on the move this a.m. and again in small numbers of threes and fours all >S and dwindling off by 0900hrs.
A small flock of 14 Coal Tits >SW over the garage at 0920hrs was unusual and good to see them moving high over the village.
Lunch time in Foxhill park saw 2 Skylark over >W and 21 Lapwing heading towards Shelf Moor.
The shield around the garden feeders seems to be doing its job according to Lynda after 2 daily visits from the Sparrowhawk which went away empty handed each time. The angle it has to come in from now only allows it to go into the Hawthorn with no access through to the feeders so as long as there are no loose Sparrows on the edge of the Hawthorn the jobs a good un, but not for the Sparrowhawk.
BS
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Monday, September 26, 2011

Evening skies over Foxhill





A good Meadow Pipit move first thing this morning but not the rush expected. Mipits were coming over Queensbury in small tight flocks but this fizzled out by 0745hrs leaving just a few stragglers following on all >S.
A single Alba Wagtail flew over >W closely followed by 2 very high Herons also >W.
BS
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Sunday, September 25, 2011

Soil Hill pm visit

Swarms of Linnets



The North Yorks. white horse just visible through the haze.

1530-1730hrs. Dry, cold strong SW>5 -6. Good visibility

Despite the strong wind Mipits and Swallows were trickling through in small numbers.
The Linnet flock was about 150 strong and 3 Twite on the NW hillside was a pleasant suprise.
Two Snipe flew over >W, remnants from todays move seen from Oxenhope, whilst 2 were flushed from the summit .These 2 birds were less than 20 yards from where I was stood scoping for 30 mins and then flew up in front of me as I started to walk .
Poor conditions but a pleasing 2 hour watch with phone conversations from DCB on my right at Oxenhope and DJS to my left at Hunters Hill.

2 Snipe........................>W
11 Swallows................>S
5 Meadow Pipit..........>S
18 LBB gull
2 Snipe on hill
3 Twite
c150 Linnet
4 Skylark
BS
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Another wet Sunday

Robins were everywhere



Many singers but no continentals


FLY FLATTS/ OGDEN

On arrival at Fly Flatts the cloud was low and the drizzle heavy which quickly deteriorated to thick fog and heavy rain. Stuck it out until 0800 hrs then abandoned and dropped down to Ogden to find low cloud and very heavy rain throughout not brightening until I was leaving at 0945hrs.
Ovenden Moor was alive with grounded Mipits and a phone call from DCB saying Oxenhope was the same so if this is the case throughout the dales, weather permitting, first light tomorrow could see a mega surge.
Despite the weather some birds were seen to move which just lifted the depression a bit although you know its bad when time is spent photographing Robins and counting the increasing Mallard flock.

Fly Flatts
25 Siskin.................................>W
154 Meadow Pipits...............>S
2 Snipe...................................>W
2 Wheatear...........................Blogging
100s of blogging Mipits

Ogden
28 Meadow Pipits....................>SW
1 Cormorant..............................>SE
6 Swallow..................................>S
7 House Martin.........................>S

130 Small gulls 60% Commons
2 LBB gulls
92 Mallard
28 Robins
BS
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Saturday, September 24, 2011

Shelf Moor to Shibden Top

Looking down Shibden Valley towards Ringby

Deep vegetation

A good catchment hillside

Black Dyke Mill from Deanstones

A decent day deteriorating into drizzle late afternoon but a strong S>5 blowing.
An early morning rush of Swallows and Mipits took place this a.m. dying down after 0830hrs.
Approx 300 Mipits and 200 Swallows were counted casually to and at work, all of which were motoring >S.
A quick visit this evening to Shelf Moor then Shibden top found both sites lively with birds.
Shelf Moor had a flock of around 40 Linnets very mobile around the gorse field and a small flock of 12 Lapwing whilst Goldfinch were again attacking the thistle tops. A few Swallows went over >S.

Shibden top had up to 20 Linnets around the gorse bushes whilst a very elusive female Blackcap fed in an Elderberry bush and a few Swallows were overhead.

Whilst in the park at last light,1915hrs a Snipe flew low overhead and dropped down on the rugby field but it was too dark to go try re locate it.
Mist and drizzle in the village tonight so hoping it clears by morning, dont want yet another foggy one.
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Friday, September 23, 2011

Shelf Moor , Corporal Lane

Sunset over Shibden

The Lapwing flock around Shelf Moor tonight was very mobile and about 40 strong tending to stick to fields nearer to Shelf.
Several Linnets were about along with a flock of 15 Goldfinch on thistles in the Hawthorn field.
Corporal Lane held 12 Mistle Thrush and 23 Magpies whilst a Green Woodpecker was calling from the valley.
A Little Owl was calling near the bottom of Deanstones but couldnt be found in the fading light.
Very little signs of vis mig over the village today other than a few Mipits >SW.
BS
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Thursday, September 22, 2011

Mipits on the move

Ready for the roost

Foxhill trees getting that Autumnal look now

A better day today keeping dry but still with that cold >SW 4.
Meadow Pipits came over in good numbers first thing this morning all directly >S but this rush had dried up by the time the sun was up and the sky had gone blue just after 0800hrs
Approx 250 were counted just with casual observations from home and to and at work. Also 5 Skylarks came over the park heading >SW at 0715hrs.
Gull numbers were again well down with just 5 Commons and 3 Black Headed divided between the park and the rugby field.
A local Robin is in full song at work now and a Wren was in and out of the conifers.
BS
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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Another quiet day over Queensbury.

This weather really is playing havoc with this years vis mig as the birds seem reluctant to move. Hopefully we will get a build up and then when they finally decide to move the floodgates will open, hopefully.
This morning started off bright but steadily deteriorated throughout the day finally giving way to heavy rain this evening again whilst I was fence building at Shelf Moor so yet again I got home like a drowned rat.
A steady flow of Mipits came over this a.m. all >S and Swallows were moving by lunch time but in small numbers also >S.  The Pied Wagtails had moved on from the rugby pitch since yesterday and only a couple of Common gulls were on the fields.
BS

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Queensbury Today

Sunset over Foxhill

Gulls in the park

Rugby field mud flatts

Robin thinking of buying a Volvo

Another miserable day with drizzle, low cloud and rain showers improving late afternoon leaving a decent evening though dark nights are closing in with darkness by 1930hrs.
The rugby field mud held 28 Common gulls, 12 Black Headed gulls and 7 Pied Wagtails early morning but no signs of any sky movement.
On the way home 150+ Starlings were feeding on the rugby field before moving off >SE to roost.
A Weasel ran across Foxhill park and into the dry stone wall, the first Ive ever seen at this location.
I was lucky to get the Robin photo as I was in the office at work and saw it flit across the car park and land on the motor, probably looking at its own reflection. You can,t beat having the camera on hand.
BS
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Monday, September 19, 2011

Not the move expected

After yesterdays fog and bad weather leaving several birds grounded I expected an early morning rush today ,mainly with Mipits but it never happened. The walk to work was quiet with nothing in the sky apart from small gulls moving from the rugby field to the park.These totalled 36 Commons and 18 Black Headed along with 4 Pied Wagtails on the rugby field mud.
By lunchtime a trickle of Mipits were moving over >SW along with several Swallows >S probably keeping ahead of the approaching rain which arrived mid afternoon.
BS

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Wheatear at the Lion Gates

No time for birding this p.m. as involved putting a fence up at daughters house at Shelf Moor which happened to be in torrential rain most of the time.
A quick look around the Lion Gates on the way home produced a single wheatear, several Mipits and Linnets and a few Swallows motoring through >S but no sign of the Lapwing flock.
Oh well, another week to wait now when hopefully we,ll get a better weekend than this.
BS

Foggy Fly Flatts

Staring through the murk



This is as good as it got



Still 2 Wheatears blogging


A strange morning weather wise with clear skies over Bradford to the east but dense fog at Fly Flatts which kept threatening to clear as the sun broke through only to be enveloped with another bank of cloud. Short periods of blue sky above but fog below kept appearing
in which birds could be seen to be moving and the morning had potential for a good count if it wasnt for the visibility. Even in the thick fog Mipits could be heard moving over but the fog persisted throughout, even though a phone call to DCB just over the hill found them to be mainly in the clear.

Meadow Pipit.........................................48 >SW
Swallow...................................................17 >S
Alba Waftail...........................................4 >W
2 Wheatear
2 Red Grouse
1 Common Sandpiper
BS
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Saturday, September 17, 2011

Down came the rain

A terrible day with heavy showers continuos throughout the day improving this evening with a slightly red sky which hopefully means a better morning tomorrow ?
Around 40 Common gulls were on the park football pitches this morning with a few Swallows and Mipits moving over >S and >SW but this soon fizzled out when the rains came.
A small flock of 15 Lapwings were in the hawthorn field at Shelf Moor this evening and a Green Woodpecker flew over the Lion gates towards the golf course.
BS

Friday, September 16, 2011

Queensbury Today

Another day comes to a close over Foxhill

Good cloud formation after the storm


A foggy start this morning so unable to see what the gull situation was after yesterdays mega count, which Im thinking now was probably due to the ridge of high pressure over us yesterday inviting birds to move.
The fog cleared mid morning leaving a dull drab day with constant light showers until 1700hrs when dark clouds came over and the heavens opened with the worst torrential rain I have seen for some time after which it brightened up leaving a pleasant evening.
Meadow Pipits were moving >SW early on this morning keeping down below the cloud base and 6 Skylarks came off the muddy rugby pitch and headed >W.
Lunch time saw 2 Alba Wagtails >W and a small group of about 8 Siskins were in the shrubs in Grimstons field though very mobile, obviously grounded birds from yesterdays mega move of this species.
Not a good forecast for the weekend but we shall see.
BS
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Thursday, September 15, 2011

Common Gulls galore

Lynda woke me this morning at 0545hrs to tell me the park was white with gulls and sure enough I counted at least 160 Commons from the bedroom window. Unfortunately the camera was downstairs but tonight it will be on the window bottom with hope that one of us wakens in time to capture the sight again. The record count for Foxhill park is around 90 so whether the new mud on the rugby field had brought them in or they were movers I dont know but I will if they,re present again tomorrow. By the time I got up at 0645hrs all but 6 had gone ,this probably due to disturbance from dog walkers.

On the way to work a few Mipits trickled over >SW along with 8 very early Chaffinch >W unless these were local birds although they had that flight pattern of movers about them.
BS

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Midday Movement

Common gull between summer and winter plumage

Several Commons are still in summer plumage

A less windy day but still a strong W>5 blowing with occassion light showers.
The walk home from work at lunch time found several Swallows and Meadow Pipits all heading >S along with 2 Alba Wagtails >W.
Common gull numbers in the park had risen to 26 with most still in summer plumage showing a pure white head whilst some were just starting to show the streaking on their heads as they go into winter plumage. Strangely all the gulls here are full adults.
Still waiting for a Queensbury Med gull which hopefully will appear in the area before DJS poaches it for Mixenden Res.
BS
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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Worth keeping an eye on.

Chapel Lane rugby field having a make over

Photos taken on way from work in torrential rain.

Queensbury rugby ground Chapel Lane is at present being re soiled which is attracting gulls in good numbers and hopefully migrants if it is to be seeded so its well worth keeping an eye on. I walk past it 4 times a day so it will be easy for me and hopefully it will produce something good. The area holds up to 70 small gulls in the winter which alternate between the rugby field and Foxhill park depending on disturbance and weather conditions. The gulls prefer the rugby field when a gale force SW is blowing where they all crouch down in the grass facing the wind, it was in such conditions a few years back that I picked out a Kittiwake amongst them.
Other than gulls today the job has been quiet again but hopefully now the winds will be dropping and things starting to move.
BS
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