Thursday 1 October 2015

Yorkshire Birding mid September

A week back home mid September and the birding was varied and all right. Despite favourable winds the east coast wasn't on fire with rarities and scarcities given the time of year.

Caught up with the Black Stork in East Yorkshire (Yorkshire tick) as it flew into roost on the eve of Sat 12th after drawing a blank for several hours in the afternoon. Whilst waiting for the Stork a Marsh Harrier hunted Sunk Island and the crazy movement of Siskin into Great Britain included 2 flocks over, with 2 or 3 (ad/2nd w) Mediterranean Gulls following the plough amongst several hundred Black-headed Gulls. A trip to Spurn (Kilnsea) the day after produced flight views of the Black Stork en route mid morning and Kilnsea yielded Red-backed Shrike and at least 2 hunting Short-eared Owls in the evening.

The moorlands near Barnsley held Buzzards and Kestrels aplenty. An imm/fem Merlin zoomed by at Midhope late afternoon on Sat 19th and a male Peregrine drifting east from the same area on a cold Sun 20th, when 2 or 3 Ravens graced Pike Lowe. On the 'lower' uplands 2 Hobbies hawked Swallows in tandem at Ingbirchworth Reservoir just before lunch on Tue 15th. Lots of hirundines over the Res. on a couple of visits with Sand Martins still being seen. Loafing Lesser Black-backed Gulls moving between the res and nearby fields numbered 265 on Tue 15th and a moulting adult Yellow-legged Gull also present was nice. At least 750 Lesser Black-backed Gulls, along with similar numbers of Black-headed Gulls, roosted with 2 Yellow-legged Gulls at nearby Langsett Reservoir that evening. One of the 'Yellow-legs' looked like the Ingbirchworth bird of earlier in the day.

During the period Old Moor RSPB held the long staying Great White Egret with several Little Egrets, Black-tailed Godwits, Dunlin, Ruff and the seemingly ever present Green Sandpipers also in attendance. Barn Owl hunted one evening with a male Sparrowhawk sneaking by. The returning Lapwings and handful of Golden Plover roosted on Wath Ings and a juv. Garganey flew in from Bolton Ings onto the Willow Pool.

Twitched the juv. Woodchat Shrike at Nosterfield, North Yorkshire on Fri 18th and drove east to Flamborough Head for an afternoon/eve seawatch. The 'northerly' winds produced 3 or 4 Sooty Shearwaters north plus a single Manx Shearwater, a few Arctic Skuas and a noticeable movement of Red-throated Divers south (30 south 15:30 - 18:10). The seawatch was cut short to take in the male Subalpine Warbler (eastern type) viewable from Old Fall. Nice to jam in on this Yorkshire tick.

More photos at 'Latest UK Bird Photos'. Please enjoy.