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Sunday, November 9, 2014

Snow Bunting for Soil Hill

   Very mobile flock of 44 Meadow Pipits
Probably over wintering birds



                              A hazy >W
           Some Mipits decide to stay
Zooming in on Oxenhope. A lonely birder scoping
                                                       the gulls.

A late afternoon visit to Soil Hill with target birds Woodcock, Jack Snipe and Snow Bunting in mind ,but low expectations, proved worthwhile, for a third of it anyway.
All seemed quiet at first apart from 4 Grey Partridge flushed but first stop was Jack Snipe alley where I got Woodcock and Jack Snipe last winter.
As I started to pass the reed bed my first victim shot up in front of me scaring me half to death, Snipe, but just a Common which flew up and landed on the NW summit not to be seen again.
After a trudge about ankle deep in bog I gave up on number 1 and number 2 species and moved back up to the tops for Snow Bunting somewhat disillusioned at this point.
Walking the west summit Meadow Pipits started to appear flying around me before the whole flock lifted up with a count of 44 but hard to see with the low sun behind them. As they flew to the north of me heading for the east summit and mounds area the bird lagging behind at the rear was obviously not a Mipit.
Up with the bins and Geronimo , Snow Bunting.
By this time they were dropping down behind the mounds on the eastern summit so camera in hand and wishing I,d paid to have the big camera mended off I dashed in pursuit.
To cut a long story short, I can see you,re getting bored by now, after a few more cat and mouse games I ended up back on the western summit where the flock of Mipits once again headed to the east but the Snow Bunt dropped down the western slope near to the path that goes down to the Ned Hill track somewhere near the heather line.
A quick search of the area found nothing but running out of both time and daylight and not a cat in hells chance of getting a pic of such a mobile bird I called it a do and came away.
Raggalds Flood was all quiet on the way home with the water level already receeding.
BS

3 comments:

Bradshaw Rambler said...

Bad luck with Snow Bunt pic Bri.
At least you spotted one and got a good Meadow Pipit.
Tks for the txt - must admit I thought you were on'till.
Better luck next time.
John.

Danny said...

Well done with the Snow Bunting Brian, one of many on my list of birds still to see.

Dave Sutcliffe said...

Reward for hard work Bri. Well done.