Moorland magic

It was a a big afternoon for us, our first visit to our local moors this year. Even only about 10 miles away we felt it was just not local enough under the past restrictions. One of the first things we saw was a flock of about 18 Golden Plover in full breeding plumage  but not looking as though they were paired off yet. They were sat in a field on the edge of the heather moor along with some Oystercatchers that were defiantly in pairs, in fact peeping over the stone wall at least two pairs were sat tight on nests. Lapwings and Curlew were both doing display flights over the fields and moor. We have been hearing this call near home recently but it sounds better in this setting. It took a while before we heard and saw the resident Red Grouse we had hoped for and as the weather was turning nasty with rain,. hail and a bit of snow thrown in not the best weather to disturb birds in never mind bird watchers. On the short walk back we managed Meadow Pipits and Pied Wagtail but unfortunately no raptors. It just felt great to get back to my favourite birding area back again soon hopefully.

Pete

Birding is for everyone no matter how good or bad we are at it,enjoy it while you can

  • Great that you and Mrs S were able to get out to a favourite spot after all this time. You saw a good number of birds, hopefully your next outing will stay nicer for you weather wise.

    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

  • It's strange but I never really knew this moor until about 2005 as it had no right of way over it and was a keepered moor. In early 2005 a small group of us were doing the training for the new Open Access laws that were due to start in England and this area was chosen for our navigation training. Since then Chris and myself have spent a lot of time doing bird surveys in the area and got a good relationship with the keepers, they are not all bad, it just seems like it at times.. Normally it is good for raptors but today any self respecting bird of prey would be hunkered down

    Pete

    Birding is for everyone no matter how good or bad we are at it,enjoy it while you can

  • Sounds like a wee bit of heaven, Pete. We only recently ‘discovered’ the local area of peat land where we often walk now to see the Stonechats, Pipits and Skylarks. We’ve only been visiting for around 1 year now but have seen Golden Plover on several occasions, mostly circling quite high up. I do wonder if they breed here. We saw a flock of around 25 birds landing in the field on Sunday but it was too misty to make them out clearly. It was the sound that initially gave their position away. It’ll be interesting to see if we can discover if they’re breeding in the area. Curlew were also spotted in the mist, and at the back end of last year we had Snipe and Redshank here as well. Raptors we’ve spotted in the area are Kestrel, Buzzard, Sparrowhawk and Peregrine.

    My bird photos HERE

  • It's good to get out a little further from now on and catch up with what's going on. Shame about the weather. I was out in hail at the end of last week when they had forecast nothing worse than sunny intervals. Luckily, just sunny intervals since.
    My local area includes the West Pennine Moors, which has just about kept me sane over the last year. It's not so good for breeding waders although a couple of Golden Plovers braved it last year. But you can't move for Pipits, Skylarks and Wheatears in summer, which brings in the odd (and surprisingly elusive) Cuckoo. Hopefully, I should hear the first one shortly. Birds of prey are normally limited to Kessies and Buzzards, with the occasional Shortie and Hen Harrier if you're lucky. The Peregrines roundabouts are almost universally townies! It's not too far to go for the Dark Peak or Forest of Bowland so trips are forthcoming!

    __________

    Nige   Flickr

  • Always good to get out, but even more so with the current circumstances.....

    A favourite reserve of mine opened yesterday (14th), which I'll be skedaddling off to when I get a free day. This retirement malarkey isn't what it should be, relaxed!  

    Mike

    Flickr Peak Rambler

  • Retirement takes a lot of getting used to Mike when I retired about 13 years ago it took me a whole weekend to get used to it. Despite a few health problems along the way it has a lot going for it but relaxed ? no way :)

    Pete

    Birding is for everyone no matter how good or bad we are at it,enjoy it while you can

  • In reply to Seaman:

    Wendy S said:
    Retirement takes a lot of getting used to Mike when I retired about 13 years ago it took me a whole weekend to get used to it. Despite a few health problems along the way it has a lot going for it but relaxed ? no way :)

    LOL, it was a tongue-in-cheek comment.

    I've settled in to retirement, though I have kept a routine (and structure) and once the pension stuff (which is progressing nicely) is all sorted, and lockdown eases yet more, and presuming Mrs PR doesn't overload me with tasks, then I'll certainly be making the most of free time.

    Mike

    Flickr Peak Rambler