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Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Queensbury, more of the thick stuff

Dense fog this a.m. again lifting then returning all morning until midday leaving a bright and warm afternoon.
Six swallows came over Foxhill at lunch time all >S , head down in migration mode whilst several Jackdaws were moving very high and >W.
Otherwise all quiet with just a few Common gulls on the top pitch.
Hopefully the fog will keep away in the morning but I,m not holding my breath.
This has got to be the worst ever September for visible migration.
BS

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

More high pressure, more fog .Bring on the frost.

        Corporal Hill watch point midday, looking over Shibden
                                                   Fogged out
                                   West over the valley of fog
                   Black Dyke Mills in the cloud
                                   Queensbury upper school

Again this morning ,as soon as daylight came so did the fog scuppering any chances of vis mig
which could have been interesting with several local reports of Redwings moving into the area.
Also a decent day for wildfowl with good counts of Teal and Wigeon, unfortunately no time to check Ogden tonight before dark.
An attempted lunchtime watch from Corporal Hill was also hampered with fog clouds swirling round the area.

Having said that, fog is nothing new to vis migging as the 1999 photos below from Oxenhope show.


              Fog creeping up the banking early morn
        Dave Barker, Howard Creber, the late Dave Marsden.
Bottom right is me sat in a deckchair on the banking just before first light and in dense fog hoping it will clear.  Photo DCB

Top left  Mark Doveston,  Dave Barker, Myself
Top right  Howard Creber, Myself, Mark Doveston
Bottom left Martin Hayes, Howard Creber, Myself

Happy days
BS

Monday, September 28, 2015

Old Guy Rd midday

Bright and clear first light this morning then a massive bank of fog rolled in and shut everything down. The fog rolled about like smoke until mid afternoon, clearing then returning looking as though it was rising up out of the valley.
So, with no vis mig possible it was a drive round Old Guy Road at lunchtime to check the cricket pitch and surrounding fields.
The pitch still held 5 Skylark and 3 Pied Wagtails whilst around 40 Goldfinch moved around the thistle patches.
A few Common gulls were in surrounding fields along with masses of Starling and that was it.
Swallows are becoming noticeable by their absence now.
BS

Sunday, September 27, 2015

A terrible end to a terrible day.

After this mornings episode with the fog I reluctantly had an hour out late afternoon but expecting little with the next worse weather to fog, hot sunshine and blue skies.
First stop, Ned Hill watch point where there was a drug convention going on so thought it best not to leave the car there, especially as there,s a burnt out shell along the track.
Next stop Ogden which was busier than Old Trafford on a Saturday afternoon, Ogden Lane blocked solid with irate drivers.
Not being the sort to give up it was on to Mixenden Reservoir, bad move, the whole area was crawling with nuggets both round the water and in it so a quick scan over the bird less water with risk of having my bins removed from me, it was once again move on.
With time now running short I headed back up Ned Hill where luckily the coast was clear so just time for 30 minutes watch.
Looking across the Causeway Foot col was poor with the blinding sun full on me so had to watch to the north towards Oxenhope reservoir where several gulls were dropping down onto the water.
A flock of around 80 Goldfinch were mobile moving around the thistles whilst 52 Canadas were in a distant field below the track.
Going by the number of Grapevine and BOG vis mig messages today, none, we all must have been in the same boat.
At least I feel better going to work tomorrow, I,ll probably see more.
BS

Another Sunday Fogged Off

        As good as it got, 2 Nuthatch on the Ogden Feeders



Fly Flatts was completely fog bound so after a short dog walk and some seed down it was back to Ogden where the fog was just as dense not even being able to see the water.
After some half hearted Nuthatch photos through the fog and seeing a Green Woodpecker zip over the info centre it was back home for 0815 hours.
Thats the second Sunday in a row now fogged off with only about 5 vis mig Sundays left other than Geese and Swans.
Oh well, try again next Sunday.!

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Ned Hill watch point / Ogden

                                      Plenty shoreline and gulls at Ogden
         Another pink legged LBB for JL


                                  Last sun over the pines

A real Pink Footed Goose morning with several reports of moving skeins , only bad news is I was at work.
Reports of sightings from DCB, DJS, AC and DW with Pinkies either to the west of us or heading west, hopefully the move will build by morning.
A late afternoon watch from Ned Hill watch point failed to produce any Pinkies with quiet skies.
Several Swallows were heading >S along with 2 Mistle Thrush, otherwise it was just the usual gulls heading to various roosts.  Two Kestrels and a Little Owl were present.

A last light visit to Ogden found the water level even lower with some tempting shore line and spits holding around 150 BHGs, 11 Common gulls and 34 LBBs but that was it.  Again, no Pinkies overhead, maybe tomorrow.

Just got a report from HC saying they had 4 skeins of Pinkies, plus specials , Red Breasted Merganser and Hobby over the Oxenhope watch point this a.m.
BS

Friday, September 25, 2015

Mega for Oxenhope and an early Redwing for Queensbury

      Early morning vis mig from Old Guy Road cricket pitch

Another steady morning on the vis mig scene with just a handful of Meadow Pipits very high and >S along with 8 Skylarks. All but 6 Skylarks had gone from the cricket pitch this morning whilst 8 Pied Wags were present.
A mega bird west over Oxenhope and possibly Fly Flatts this morning with an Arctic Skua passing the Oxenhope watch point. Thanks to HC for the text.
A surprise mid morning for me with a single Redwing low over the garage although there has been a few sightings around the country today according to Trektellen as well as large skeins of Pink Footed Geese mainly along the east yorkshire coast.
A text from Angela and Gary this morning with a singing Chiffchaff in their Boothtown garden.
Eyes on the skies this weekend.
BS

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Old Guy Rd, midday, Skylarks galore

                 Black clouds from the garage this morning

         Fall of Skylarks around the cricket pitch









A day of sunshine , showers, rainbows and cool westerlies.
Very little on the move this morning in  the strong wind and heavy showers, just 6 Meadow Pipits counted on my pre work watch.
A trip around Old Guy Rd at lunchtime produced a pleasing number of Skylarks with 15 on the pitch and about another 12 around the walls all moving through.
Also present were 5 Pied Wagtails, 3 being juvs and 1 distant Wheatear.
Good to hear that Snow Buntings, Fieldfare and Redwings are back in the country and Redwings being reported as far south as Manchester today.
BS

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Another of those boring blogs.

A mixed bag of weather today with a grey start followed by sunshine and blue skies breaking down late p.m. with showers on a W>5.
Meadow Pipits were livelier today but still no signs of the big push which should have appeared by now. Another 5 weeks and it will be all over apart from Woodpigeons, Geese and Swans, the worst September on record for vis mig, not only in this area but all over the country with poor reports daily on Trektellen.

Foxhill vis mig.
98 Meadow Pipits..................................>S
21 Goldfinch..........................................>W
18 Woodpigeons...................................>S
6 Coal Tits............................................>W
BS

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Queensbury, on the quiet side

Very little vis mig this morning although conditions were good before the blue sky appeared.
Common gulls were moving through in numbers plus a few Mipits and Finches but otherwise poor.
Lunchtime saw a few Swallows through but no time for birding after tea with near darkness by 1900 hrs.

Vis Mig Foxhill

6 Meadow Pipits..............................>S
3 Greenfinch....................................>W
4 Chaffinch.....................................>W
1 Skylark........................................>S
47 Common gulls..........................>SW
5 Swallows....................................>S
BS

Monday, September 21, 2015

Some October birds to watch for, coming soon.

     Oct 2014     Fieldfare piling into our area


 Oct 2013        Pink Footed Geese over Oxenhope
            Pinkies above the Oxenhope vis mig team,
                                Taken from Soil Hill




         Oct 2014  2 Whoopers on Ogden

                                October Little Grebes arrive at Ogden
               Oct 2014   Pinkies over the garage, Queensbury

          October 2013, good numbers of Goldcrest at Ogden
   Which invited this early Nov 2013 Firecrest
  A mega tick for Ogden

 Which attracted this well known character,  DJS

Queensbury vis mig was a little livelier this morning in the grey damp sky but short lived fizzling out by 0730 hrs.

18 Meadow Pipit........................>S
3 Swallow..................................>S
4 Mistle Thrush.........................>W
1 Skylark...................................>S
18 Starling................................>NW
21 Woodpigeon.......................>S
2 Chaffinch.............................>W
BS

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Ringby Top, Charming !!

                                     Plenty LBB gulls about

 Best I could do with your Buzzard way across the valley Dave. ( DJS )
      Mega charms of Goldfinch
 Count them if you like, answers on a postcard.









At last, decent weather late afternoon with a WSW>4 and 100% cloud cover with no sign of the blinding sun.
Ringby top was alive with Goldfinch moving around from patch to patch of thistles, one flock well over the 100 mark, whilst a small flock of 10 Linnets kept to the northern end around the banking.
Good to meet DJS up there making watching easier when viewing 360 degrees.
Corvids were up in force mobbing a Kestrel whilst LBB gulls harassed a Sparrowhawk . Meanwhile sharp eyed Dave clocked a Buzzard way across the valley low over Hunter Hill but unfortunately going in the opposite direction.
A small flock of  15 passerines flew over >S looking like Siskins but unfortunately neither of us could get a definite I.D. on them so they have gone down as : cud av bins :.
As we parted company and headed our separate ways, Dave to his car at the south end and me to my car at the north end, I got a call from Dave reporting a f Stonechat near to Ploughcroft, a bird I,d just been remarking about not having had one this year, but with time against me I had to give that one a miss for now.
BS