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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.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Queensbury Today

A dull windy day S>4-5 but remaining dry.
Very little in the skies today making it feel like Vis mig has drawn to a close. In the old days of Oxenhope watching we used to end the watch on the first Sunday in November when it becomes impossible to tell movers from established birds such as flocks of Fieldfares seen moving from roosts to feeding grounds etc.
Watching now will be switched to local waters for winter wildfowl and passerine flocks such as Goldcrests for Firecrest and Chaffinches for Brambling , Redpoll for Mealys and so it goes on, theres always something to look for in birding, no forgetting the white winged gulls of course.
Having said all that all Ive had today is a few Fieldfares over early morn and the usual Common gulls in the park midday although less than 1 mile away Nigel was watching Grey Plover and Greenland Wheatear on Soil Hill, see Queensburybirder for his full report.
Ive also lost one birding watch now as on the walk home from work at 1715hrs its pitch black.
BS

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Autumnal Ogden scenes





Taken this morning.
BS

Day of the Cormorant, Ogden

The Ogden Cormorant joined the movers and left.
1 of 2 LBBs

Heron trying its luck in the water plant.
                                                        LBB passing through
Sunday Oct 30th 2011
Another Fly Flatts abandonment due once again to dense fog and heavy drizzle.
Back down at Ogden the mist cleared by 0800hrs leaving a bright , calm autumnal morning until 0935 when another front started closing in bringing cloud and drizzle.
Skies were quiet apart from a few Woodpigeons probably marking the near end of vis mig for another year though Cormorants were on the move with 3, 2 and another 2 then joined by the Ogden bird all heading >E.
The edges of the wood were busy with a growing number of Goldcrests and Treecreepers showing well.
Several Tit flocks were apparent along with Chaffinchs and Dunnocks. Two Redpoll were a nice treat and 4 Crossbills flew over calling heading towards the giants tooth.

8 Cormorant.............................>E
2 LBB gulls
3 Common Gulls
28 BH gulls
2 Redpoll
11 Goldcrest
3 Treecreepers
Flocks of Tits and Chaffinch
Sev Dunnocks and Robins
usual Mallards etc
BS

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Another morning of movement

                                                   Several Black Headed Gulls heading South
                                                Early morning Woodpigeons

Another active morning with birds keeping low down in the strong wind.
Again Woodpigeons and Fieldfares were the dominant birds >SE but this morning late Meadow Pipits were coming through >S which were probably the late breeders leaving the moors. A steady flow of Black Headed gulls was obvious this morning going on till near midday all heading >S.
Fieldfare and Woodpigeon movement had stopped by 0915hrs.
A nice suprise was 11 Siskin over the garage >E.
Dont forget your clocks back tonight marking the end of evening birding for a while but you can have an extra hour in bed, unless that is, you,re a vis migger catching the early sunrise!
BS

Friday, October 28, 2011

Skies Alive

                                         Distant Pinkies over towards Bradford

                                                Skies full of Woodpigeons
                                                Several flocks of Fieldfare

A cracking day both weather wise and bird wise with skies full of movement from first light.
Woodpigeons were the main movers with several large flocks over >S sparkling in the sunlight and continuing to move until about 0915hrs.
Fieldfares were heading >S but going by the height and jizz these were probably established birds moving from roosts and heading towards feeding grounds but a good sight to see estimating about 300 birds up until 0930hrs.
Mid morning a fast thinking NK called me shouting down the phone, " get out in the car park quick, Pinkies heading your way from Soil Hill.
After grabbing the camera I shot out into the car park in time to see 95 Pinkies in the distance well over to the east of me heading >ESE and just in range of a few record shots, thanks for the call Nigel.
A later call from Nigel from his garden with 3 Cormorants over the garage >S ended up in a dip when they were just too fast for me.
By lunch time all was quiet, phew!
BS

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Fog , rain and more fog

A terrible day at the top of this hill today with dense fog to start with then heavy rain most of the day and another bank of fog  p.m. to finish off with.
A strange sky early evening when on the way to Illingworth Morrisons with mist and heavy rain but a bright red sunset could be seen to the west, hopefully it will make a better day tomorrow,
Unfortunately no birds to report today other than a few Common gulls in Foxhill at lunch time.
BS

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Queensbury Today

                                      Sunrise on the way to work
                               This Fieldfare swooped down to catch something dropped
                                by another bird.
                                    Foxhill after dark

Report below.
Couldnt post pics earlier in usual way, blog playing silly beggars.
BS

Woodpigs and Thrushes



A bright clear day with very little sky activity other than an early morning move >S of Woodpigeons and Fieldfare which had dried up by 0900hrs. The groups were small consisting of 10 to 20 birds making it look like autumn vis mig is nearing a close for another year.
A low count of Common and Black Headed gulls were in the park at midday along with a blogging Meadow Pipit which was an unusual sight.
A Grey Squirrel is visiting the garden feeders daily but doesnt seem to bother the Sparrows that are happy to feed alongside it. A neighbour by the garage looked out at his bird feeders and was shocked to see a massive Brown Rat which had climbed the trellis work on his hut to get to the fatballs.
BS

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Fogged out.

The story this morning. Blank out.


Dense fog through the night and not clearing until 0845hrs only to rapidly come in again until 0930hrs by which time most movement would have stopped.
By midday the skies were grey but clear and whilst I was having my dinner 3 flocks of 50+ Fieldfare flew over >SE but shortly afterwards in the park all was quiet.
By late afternoon the sun was out making for a good sunset and several newly arrived flocks of Starling decended on the village moving around in groups of 60+ wherever there was food.
Just on the way to the vets at Halifax when we got the call about ACs Whoopers but no sign over the valley from Crow Point.
BS
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Monday, October 24, 2011

Woodpigs Galore

Still a few Peacock butterflies about

Whirlybird over the garage.

Alterations in the back garden make good dust baths for
the House Sparrows.



A red ball sunrise but soon overcome with cloud and a cool S>4 later turning SE>5.

Woodpigeons piled over this morning from first light until 0915 when movement ceased. The birds were coming over in flocks of 50 to 100 plus estimating well over 1000 woodpigs over and being at work several will have been missed. The flight path was to the SE of the garage meaning that they would have come over the Bradford area just out of sight in the milky skies to the lads at Oxenhope. Hopefully MP will have been on watch at Caldene fields where he should have got a record count.
Two large flocks of Fieldfare came over early on heading >W and otherwise the skies were quiet for the rest of the day.
A count of 36 Common gulls were in Foxhill Park at midday.
BS
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Sunday, October 23, 2011

Causeway Foot Col

A murky view south over Mixenden reservoir

The Ned Hill track to the watch point

1500-1600hrs. Mild S>4. Milky skies 360 deg.

Despite the limited visibility,( 20miles ), birds were moving through the col all south with a steady flow of Common gulls and Fieldfares throughout the watch.

Common Gull................................. 197 >S
Fieldfare..........................................237 >S
Redwing..........................................27 >S
LBB gull...........................................6 >S

8 Meadow Pipits blogging
2 Skylark blogging
2 Kestrel
BS
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Fly Flatts/ Hunter Hill

A blustery Fly Flatts

Remember the north shoreline

Dark skies over Hunter Hill

A poor start weather wise at Fly Flatts with S>4 increasing S>6 and drizzle with moderate visibility.
Skies were lively until 0915 when movement stopped other than a few Starlings powering through.
The sight of the morning was a flock of c150 Starings carpet crawling over the moor like a black cloud, and 3 Wigeon over heading north.
A single female Goosander was on the water which was unusual.
Hunter Hill was much calmer wind wise but had empty skies other than a few corvids. Three blogging Mipits there were the only ones seen and the moor at Fly Flatts seemed strangely quiet without them.

Fly Flatts
380 Starling.................................>NW
3 Wigeon......................................>N
92 Fieldfare.................................>NW
12 Redwing.................................>NW
15 LBB Gulls..............................>S
1 Herring Gull............................>W
130 Woodpigeons......................>S
5 Snipe.......................................>W
1f Goosander on water.

Hunter Hill
3 Blogging Meadow Pipits
usual corvids.
BS
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Saturday, October 22, 2011

Woodies and Fieldfares

Woodpigs fill the sky



The local Sparrowhawk does a quick flypast.

A beautiful red ball sunrise this morning but a slow start to any movement, the south wind not doing any favours.
Woodpigs were the main movers from 0800-0915hrs all >S but soon coming to a halt leaving empty skies until 1000hrs when a small number of thrushes started moving over >NW but this was short lived and only low numbers counted.
The local Sparrowhawk zoomed across the car park only letting me get a quick snap as it didappeared over the rooftops.
BS
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Friday, October 21, 2011

A quieter day

Some early morning photos on the way to work yesterday

Unfortunately today was nothing like.


A miserable start to the day with a strong SW>5 and heavy drizzle which soon cleared leaving a grey windy day .
Woodpigeons were overhead first thing all >S but in small groups of 10 to 20 stopping moving by 0830hrs.
A few squadrons of fast moving Starlings in mover mode darted over >S and by late morning a scattering of Fieldfares were heading >W and >NW with one or two Redwing in amongst.
A nice little charm of 7 Goldfinch were feeding next to the garage on seed tops but were too mobile for a photo. This was a first for the garage.
Hopefully the Whoopers will stay at Ogden till Sunday but its highly unlikely. See Calderbirds.
BS
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Thursday, October 20, 2011

Pigs, Pinkies, Pips and Pilaris

A nice skein midday over Queensbury




Another bright sunny day from first light until late afternoon which gave way to slight rain showers.
Early morning saw Woodpigeons coming over >S but in small numbers with several Meadow Pipits mixed in with them. By 0900 the Woodpigs had stopped moving but the Mipits continued on throughout the day right up until last light but in small groups of 4 to 6.
I kept searching the skies for Pinkies thinking that the weather was ideal but no joy until half way through my dinner HC rang with the call Id been waiting for " About 130 Pinkies heading for Queensbury from the SE." That was it, dinner gulped down in one, dogs in one hand and camera in the other a quick dash into the park just in time to hear them coming and then a sighting to the south of me heading SW towards the Calder Valley. Amazing, to me my most favourite sight in the birding world is to see and hear skeins of geese going over. This skein was later picked up over Calderdale with a count of 145.
Back at work after an exciting lunch break a call from DCB warning of good numbers of Fieldfares building moving west and soon after I started getting dribs and drabs and one good flock of about 60 so all in all a very pleasing day.
Many thanks Howard for the Pinkie warning, without which they,d have gone over unseen whilst I was jocking and same to Dave with the Fieldfares.
Whilst I was up the park at lunchtime Howard was also trying to direct me onto a Lancaster bomber over Yeadon but although I could see the control tower without optics to see the plane was asking a bit much from my ageing eyes.
This evening at Illingworth Morrisons the Pied Wagtail roost is building with up to 40 birds in the Laurels.
BS
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