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Saturday, August 13, 2016

A trek through Shibden, Slack End to Lee Lane and a Ruff do at Oxenhope.

                                                      Another Buzzard across the valley
                                       A very noisy bird

                 Plenty House Martins around
            as well as Willow Warblers
         This was the brightest Willow Warb ever, first sighting
I thought Id got a Wood Warbler.
 Mega distant record shots of Ruff at Oxenhope


The plan today after shopping was a trek through Shibden Valley starting at Slack End, Swalesmoor and ending up at Lee Lane by the Shibden Mill Inn checking the migrant situation. Then early evening a trip to Oxenhope to check the gull situation giving things time to settle in case there had been a shoot on.
This walk is definitely not for the faint hearted with most of the tracks either overgrown with Brambles and Nettles or ankle deep in bog.
Birds were sparse but managed 17 Willow Warblers, 4 Whitethroat and a Blackcap along with Gt and Blue Tits. Ironically most of the birds were in the Hawthorns at Slack End by the side of Swalesmoor Rd.
One Willow Warbler was as yellow as a Canary making me suspect Wood Warbler at first glance but not to be.
A noisy Buzzard flew low across the far side of the valley and several Mistle Thrush , including juvs ,were in a Cotoneaster tree.

Tea time and a quick trip for Lynda to Matalan and whilst we were there a call from Mick Cunningham reporting 800 +  gulls including at least 2 Yellow Legged Herrings and to round it off a RUFF on the shoreline.
Its a job when a Huddersfield birder has to come and find us birds on local waters but Micks no stranger to Oxenhope.
Anyway, 1 hour later and I was up on the banking alongside Mick scoping the Ruff.
By this time most of the gulls had left being spooked by a juv Peregrine but luckily the Ruff had remained.
Disappointing that I couldnt do any better on the photo scene but with a sandy coloured bird against a sandy beach background and way out of range for my 420mm lens but never the less a great bird to see.
Just got MCs report through on the gulls with :-
2 ad YL Herrings
2 near ad YL Herrings
at least 2 juv YL Herring
and 15 Herrings
10 Curlew and a Ruff.
No bad for a couple of hours birding.
Great to see you up there Mick, just like old times but less all the birders. Thanks again for the call.
BS

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