Thursday, 18 October 2018

Walshaw Dean .etc

Siskin x 45
Crossbill x 32 (inc 7 red males)
LTTit x 4
Cole Tit x 2
Grey Partridge x 6
Dipper x 1
Little Owl x 1
SEO x 7
Barn Owl x 3
Sparrowhawk x 1
Buzzards x 2
Fieldfare x 400 +
Kestrel x 10 +
Hen Harrier ( seen by NCD only)
Raven x 1
Wren x 1
Great Spotted Woodpecker x 2
PH , RG , Magpie , C.crow Canada Goose......Over 40 species this week

Tuesday, 16 October 2018

Tonights PFGeese

Walshaw Dean

Busy on the hills today and yesterday  , ---
Mallard x 54
Fieldfare x 750 aprox
Redwing x 4
SEOwl x 6
BOwl x 3
Hen Harrier x 1 young male (had a bit of a tussle with a Barn Owl at one point )
Pink footed Geese 93 + 85 +67 (250 aprox s/w)
Buzzard x 6
Kestrel x 10
Merlin x 1
Golden Plover x 6
Lapwing x 4
Oystercatcher x 1
Goosander x 4
Wheatear x 1
Cole Tit x 2
Red Grouse 70 + 40
Raven x 2 (displaying , and at one point one bird landed on the ground picked up a large piece of Juncuss and followed the female over the hill and landed on the high rocks , lots of calling and display flights.
Chaffinch x 6
Blue Tit x 1
Mistle Thrush x 5
Reed Bunting x 2
Carrion Crow , Jay and Jackdaw
Stock Dove , Woodpigeon and Collard Dove

Monday, 15 October 2018

Sunday, 7 October 2018

Walshaw Dean x 2

10th October
Walshaw Dean Plantation + walk up to Gorple
Siskin , Goldfinch , Chaffinch , Brambling (1) , Cole tit , Great Tit , Great Spotted Woodpecker , Mistle Thrush , Buzzard , Blackbird , Starling , (Pheasant, Red Grouse )  , Woodpigeon , Collard Dove , Meadow Pipit , Marsh Harrier , Hen Harrier , Oystercatcher , Mallard , Short -eared Owl , Fieldfare ,,LBB Gull , BH Gull , Carion Crow , Jay ,  Dipper (at last light) , Kestrel , ...Not bad for a few hours on the hills .

7th October
A walk round all 3 Walshaw reservoirs today...(9 -12)
Mistle Thrush x 30 +
Redwing  x 3
Fieldfare x 19
Blackbird x 3
Crossbill x 20+
Reed Bunting x 20 +
Meadow Pipit x 200 +
Merlin  x 1
Kestrel x 10 +
Sparrowhawk x 1
Raven x 2
Peregrine x 1
Mallard x 18
Partridge x 17 (looked like grey but could have been red legged ?are they releasing them up there??)
Dipper x 1 ( top res)
Wheatear x 1

Northowram vis mig (7-8)
Goosander x 3 s/w
Snipe x 1 s/w
Pink footed Goose x 3  east
Redwing x 4 s/w

Thursday, 4 October 2018

More Pinks

Difficult to see but there are 219 pink footed geese in this pic..............thanks for message Dave...
been an excellent start to the winter geese count with 577 so far............

Monday, 1 October 2018

October 1st

Barn Owl x 4 , SEO x 1 , Hen Harrier x 1 , 16 Crossbill, 100 Siskin , 2 Redpoll , 1 Great Spot , Buzzards , Kestrel  and a Sparrowhawk ............

Northowram..4 Buzzards , 2 Sparrowhawk , 10 House martin , 33 Small Copper , 9 Red Admiral , 1 Comma , 1 Small Tortoiseshell , 2 Linnet and 10 Meadow Pipit

Wednesday, 26 September 2018

More Pinks , Coppers and lady's

26th Sept

42 and 96 west today at around 9 o'cock thanks Mike and Dave............2 Snipe also
100 west sat 29th...


70 West and 35 Meadow Pipit on cricket pitch

Butterflies 27th Sept

Small Copper x 30
Red Admiral x 3
Small White x 3


Small Copper x 30
Red Admiral x 11
Painted lady x 1

25TH SEPT 2018

                                                     Carrion Crow and Sparrowhawk

                                                          Red Admiral

Another busy day Sparrowhawk and Carrion Crow having a tussle and the Buzzards were terrorising the local jackdaws . 16 Small Coppers , 1 Large White , 1 Comma and 3 Red Admiral at home and then off to Hebden where there were 10 + Red Admiral , 10 + Comma , 3 Small Tortoiseshell and 1 Speckled Wood.
 On to the hills ,Raven ,  8 + Buzzards , 10 + Kestrels , 1 Sparrowhawk , 1 sat tagged Hen Harrier , 6 Barn Owl , 1 Tawny Owl and at least 5 SEOwls. A Song thrush on the path back down lokk like it was a migrant.??

Monday, 24 September 2018


Started with good walk round the local fields,,,12 Small Copper , 3 Speckled Wood , 4 Red Admiral and 3 Small Whites. A juv Stonechat was a good find and the local Buzzards and Sparrowhawk were pretty active in the sun.
   Up to Fly flatts in the evening watched 3 Barn Owl , 2 Buzards and a couple of Snipe .

Sunday, 23 September 2018

Beautiful day today..

Pink footed geese             32 and 43 west and 3 east
Canada goose                      2 west
House martin                      23 south
Swallow                             4 south


Red Admiral x 10
Small Copper x 7
Small White x 4
Small Tortoiseshell x 1
Silver Y x 3

Saturday, 22 September 2018

Marsh Harrier on the hills

Another great morning to be out watched Marsh Harrier for about 55 minutes
Marsh Harrier x 1 juv cream crown
Hen Harrier x 1 ringtail
Kestrel x 5
Buzzard x 1
SEO x 2
LEO x 1
Curlew x 5 s/w
House Martin x 3 s/w
Swallow x 2 s/w
Pink footed Geese x 42
Meadow Pipit x 458 s/w
Mistle Thrush x 2
Snipe x 3 s/w

Friday, 21 September 2018

the ups and Downs

Had a look round today in the storm hoping for a scarce gull or summat ...

1 Little Grebe
1 tufted Duck
30 Mallard
4 LBBGull
2 Common Gull
20 BHGull

Cromwell Bottom

2 BH Gull

Jay House lane

50 + BH Gull
300+ Starlings

304 Canada Goose
1 Moorhen
2 Tufted Duck
179 Lapwing
7 Golden Plover
1 House Martin
20 Meadow Pipit
BH Gull 3

I was just about to pack in and go home as the rain was horizontal , when I picked up 2 Terns in the middle of the downpour...They looked all white ?? and quite large ? had to switch to the scope quickly but I had the zoom eyepiece in  and did not pick them up until they were flying low across the big field ...just got them black bills and black heads...2 Sandwich  Terns ,then they were gone off towards Batings lost in the gloom...............

Thursday, 20 September 2018

Fly flatts Mipit bonanza

A beautiful morning to be out..........
9.00 - 12.00
Vis mig
Meadow Pipit        550 + s/w
Swallow                     9  s/w
Pied Wagtail               5 s/w
Snipe                          1 s/w
Starling                      3 s/w
Skylark                       1 s/w

Kestrel x 4
Sparrowhawk x 1 female
Peregrine x 1 juv
Buzzard x 1
RL Partridge x 6
Teal x 1
Little Owl x 1

Red Admiral x 4
Small Tortoiseshell x 1
White sp x 1

Wednesday, 19 September 2018

One of those nights.....


 Every now and then when you are least expecting a good night , it turns out to be one of the best . With a strong wind ( Storm Helene) gusting 5/6 occasional 7 SW blowing over the dam wall we had to retreat to side of the old Barn with restricted views of the area. A couple of Buzzards and a few Kestrel on the way up was a bonus in the high winds.  Two Raven and a Buzzard were having a scarp over a piece of old rabbit on the far shoreline and a  small raptor chasing Meadow Pipits looked like a Merlin initially  but turned out to be a Sparrowhawk as it landed on one of the fence  posts ,  it carried on over the moor and then low over the reservoir .  As soon as it disappeared a female Merlin appeared over the hill chasing Meadow Pipits it stooped and then up into a hover ?? (is it a Kes) then again a stoop and up into a hover it repeated this another 2 times before heading off over the hill top. A hovering Merlin.!!
 We then picked up the adult male Hen Harrier behind the wood , it was hunting along the far edge , it then rose over the trees low over the reservoir and into the roosting area , it was turning left and right the sun catching it occasionally highlighting the grey and black against the golden / orange moor.
It went for a Meadow Pipit,  its yellow legs hanging below trying to grasp its prey but it missed , it turned and tried again but missed again ,it flew low south twisting and turning in the high wind.  Immediately as it disappeared a large female with sat tag highlighted in the sun was in the roosting area it landed on a fence post and gave some distant views, long enough for Nick to get some distant photos.It flew after a bit of preening and went straight into roost . ...breath...
  A Short - eared Owl and Barn Owl were both seen hunting and 2 Oystercatcher were kicking around the dam wall . The Male  Hen Harrier was seen again behind the wood hunting from right to left then back again. After  a  while the male gained height and was joined by a ringtail , this was soon identified as the larger juv female which has been around for a few weeks now , still fully winged , pale coverts and large white rump make it easy to identify. The male escorted the young female into the roosting area and for the next 20 minutes they danced around the moor close together occasionally landing on the ground together and 2 or 3 times we thought they were going into roost but kept on bouncing out and continuing flying around together.  They eventually  went into roost at 19.20.
 At 19.25 the Merlin returned and started hovering again as we got back to the car it just started to rain !!

Pied Wagtails

1 on the 16th a small very dark individual with very dark grey flanks and dark  grey face.
6 on the 18th including 4 with bright yellow face and 2 adult Pied.
1 on the 19th another dark individual probable juv female .
2 on the 23rd Adult summer male and adult winter male

Friday, 14 September 2018

Raven ,

                                                               Local Buzzard

Looking out of the window I could see the local Buzzards  in combat , got the bins on them and its
 was a Raven and Buzzard having a good old tussle in the sky. A flock of 29 Canada geese flew east and 30 Goldfinch
 Up on the hills the wind was blowing a strong westerly. SEO , Merlin and a juv male Hen Harrier.

Tuesday, 11 September 2018


Well its been a long time and my first this year in Calderdale but , I stumbled across 5 Twite today on the way back from Fly Flatts , just after the Old Withens pub a small bird flew off the road and into the nearby field it looked like a chat and I was thinking its gonna be a Stonechat , but i could not relocate it in the strong gusty winds, but I did flush 5 small birds that landed on the fence 5 Twite ..its been a few years since I have seen them up there......Up at  Fly there were 24 Mallard , 11 Teal, 3 Kestrel , 2 Buzzards and 1 Pintail....

Monday, 10 September 2018

Pintail .......................

A look round Fly this morning had 2 Raven 5 Meadow Pipit ,  2 Wheatear , 5 Kestrel , 2 LBBgull , 9 Teal and a Pintail (found by DJS yesterday). In the evening on the hills 1 female Merlin , 3 SEO , 1 Common Sandpiper , 2 Reed Bunting , 4 Kestrel and a beautiful male Hen Harrier and a juv female Hen Harrier, few Buzzards and Swallows...

Wednesday, 5 September 2018

Calm again on the hills

A great still evening with the first birds seen 2 Ravens having a tussle with a Peregrine. Then  the first of many SEO's and a distant Marsh Harrier. 4 Goosander , Oystercatcher with a nearly fully grown juvenile. Then a Barn Owl started hunting on the hillside this bird must have been a juv as it could not catch a thing after many goes. Swallows  were on the move s/w all evening and a flock of 80+ Meadow Pipits were on the wires.A small group of Wagtails landed on the dam wall 2 Grey , 4 Juv Pied and a stonking adult White. 5 SEO and  2 Barn Owls were now hunting around the reservoir and were joined by a Juv LEO. As the light was fading a female Merlin was seen hunting the Meadow Pipit flock.............................

Monday, 3 September 2018


Distant Ruff and Teal , Kestrel  and Vapourer at fly today....(16 Teal , 3 Wheatear ,4 Kestrel)

Thursday, 30 August 2018

Calm on the moors

(Photo Sarah Hanson many thanks)
A calm and still evening today produced 7/8 kestrel , 8 SEO's , 3 LEO 's , 3 Barn Owls , 2 Buzzards and 2 Hens ( one with sat tag and 1 juv female) 1 male Sparrowhawk and a few Oyck's and Curlew.
On the pic above you can just make out the sat tag....

Wednesday, 29 August 2018

Cricket pitch

Had my first 3 Juv pied Wags this morning one with bright yellow face and smoky grey flanks , other 2 were grey juvs . 55 Starlings ,  4 Goldfinch and 35 Swallows , some of the Swallows were sitting on the grass.............1  juv Dunnock also

Hills alive with Owls

What a night to be out , as I got out of the car I could hear Raven and I could see a group of birds over New Laith pasture  on closer inspection , 1 Juv peregrine , 2 Buzzards and 2 Raven were all up in the air together.
   A SEO was seen briefly on the track to the south. What a night , 3 Barn Owls , 6 SEO's and 2 LEO's( i ad +i juv) all hunting on the same hillside giving excellent views for long periods.One juv female Hen Harrier , Kestrels and Curlews added to a memorable was good to note that in the fading light , Barn Owls look very white , LEO's look Dark and rounded and SEO look pale..............

Wednesday, 22 August 2018

Young Tawny Owl

Young Tawny Owl in the Craggs last night.................

Monday, 20 August 2018

Little Egret

A bit of luck at last with yesterdays Common Scoter and  a flock of waders at Fly Flatts today (9 Ringed Plover , 10 Dunlin and 2 Curlew) . A Little Egret flew along Shibden Valley today , it was always at a difficult angle so I could not get the shape at all until at the last moment it turned so I could see it.

Common Scoter

One adult male Common Scoter on Booth Wood Reservoir today in thick fog and drizzle. A fine adult Stoat and Common Sandpiper yesterday ,   in thick mist and drizzle, last night a new Calderdale moth species ...Pale Prominent(above , pic CS) , ....

Sunday, 12 August 2018

Painted lady makes 23

Went to hebden for the HH day and took in the bit of waste ground at Mythom. First butterfly was this Painted lady my 23rd species in Calderdale this year...............................What a year its been.....................

Saturday, 11 August 2018



Had a drive about yesterday evening looking for Owls.started with Little Owl  sat on the top of a wall minding it's own business. Soon after  this I watched 5 SEOwls hunting 3 juvs and 2 adults , One of the adults caught a vole and gave it to one of the hungry juvs sat on a wall. One of the juv's had a pure white tail which made it easy to pick out .Then onto a local abandoned mill to watch 2 Barn Owls hunting in the failing light, a Tawny owl was calling from a nearby wood and was also seen hunting as the light failed..................