• A Big Little Bird – Sightings, 15 Sept

    Ever wondered why bird folk set such store in a good pair of binoculars or a telescope? Birds like little stint, that’s why!

    Here’s what was seen out there today…

    At Edderthorpe today, a juvenile curlew sandpiper was recorded along with garganey, three pintail and three golden plover. Not to mention over a thousand geese and over eight hundred lapwing!

    Adwick Washland was the place to go to catch up…

    • 15 Sep 2019
  • Ruff Weather - Sightings, 12 Sept

    The heat of a summer’s day met autumn’s blustery winds in the Dearne Valley today. Here’s what was seen…

    Straightaway you’ll have seen a few changes to the recent cast of Old Moor’s birds. First of all, that sighting of spotted flycatcher needs some explanation. The bird was first seen by our warden, Dave Waddington, in the early morning. It was feeding in the trees beyond the large…

    • 12 Sep 2019
  • Milestones - Sightings, 10 Sept

    There are many signs of the season in the bird year: first chiffchaff, first cuckoo, last swallow. Today, as if to remind us that the year is turning, we passed a few more of these ‘milestones’ in the Dearne Valley.

    Here’s what was seen today…

    Lapwing numbers have been building for a while now and regular visitors to Old Moor will know that another plover tends to arrive about this time. So it…

    • 10 Sep 2019
  • More Surprises - Sightings, 8 Sept

    It may have been sunny for the most part but there was a touch of ground frost this morning. Nevertheless, the day picked up with some truly exceptional bird sightings…

    It’s not just about the birds of course so, for a change, here’s today’s butterfly and dragonfly list first. Butterflies seen today included: red admiral; painted lady; comma; small blue; small white; and speckled wood. Dragons…

    • 8 Sep 2019
  • And Osprey - Sightings, 5 Sept

    A very quick update this evening. Here’s what was seen at Old Moor and satellite reserves today…

    As you can see from the title, at 13:14 today an osprey made its way across the Field Pool at Old Moor, in front of Field Pool West hide. It then followed the road to Manvers Lake and was lost to view.

    This was most probably the same bird picked up at Anglers Country Park, near Wakefield earlier this morning…

    • 5 Sep 2019
  • Wath Ings - Sightings, 3 Sept

    There was no doubt as to where the bird ‘hotspot’ was at Old Moor today. From the evidence of the sightings book, Wath Ings was the place to be!

    Here’s what was seen there as well as a roundup of sightings from the satellite reserves…

    Right now the conditions on the main marsh in front of the Wath Ings hide are perfect for returning migrant waders. Today there were green sandpiper, snipe, gr…

    • 3 Sep 2019
  • The Best Bit - Sightings, 1 Sept

    In response to the new month, one dour voice in the hides today remarked, “Ay, it’ll soon be Christmas.” Folk who heard, laughed. The year’s end is a long way off yet, and – for wildlife watchers – autumn is the best bit!

    Here’s what was seen out there today…

    At Adwick Washland today, among other things there were four ruff and a stonechat. There was also an unseasonable…

    • 1 Sep 2019
  • Five Turnstone – Sightings, 29 Aug

    Today’s summary of sightings is a complicated one with some terrific birds across the five reserves listed (well, six if you add Broomhill Park).

    See what I mean…

    And yes, one of the recent great white egrets was seen again today at Old Moor. So – as the turnstone weren’t keen on having their photos taken – here’s the great white being moved on by one of the hundred or so lapwing…

    • 29 Aug 2019
  • So Long? - Sightings, 27 Aug

    Another busy bird-filled day in the Dearne Valley! If you’re in a rush, here’s the summary…

    Sadly, despite watchers searching throughout the day, it looks like the great white egrets have finally moved on. To be fair, the first did arrive on the 4th Aug and another on the 21st with an incredible third joining them on the 24th!

    Today there was no sign though, as we know, even large birds can and do…

    • 27 Aug 2019
  • And an Osprey - Sightings, 25 Aug

    Did I say two? There were an incredible three great white egrets at Old Moor today. And an osprey!

    Here’s what else was recorded…

    First, the only sighting I have from elsewhere in the Dearne Valley was that the recent black-necked grebe is still at Adwick Washland. Amazingly, this bird has been present for four days now and surely must move on soon. See it while you can.

    EDIT - No sooner had I pressed …

    • 25 Aug 2019
  • TWO Great White - Sightings, 22 Aug

    Yes, you read that title correctly. Not one but two great white egrets today – well, and at least yesterday to be fair. Here’s what was recorded…

    But before we get on to great whites, there was a black-necked grebe at Adwick Washland today - and still there at the time of writing. Luckily, the remarkable Gary Stones was on hand to take a few photos and report that the bird is on Harlington Flash. Thanks…

    • 22 Aug 2019
  • Th'weet eet-eet-eet - Sightings, 20 Aug

    Evening friends. Sightings in a moment, but first, an apology to those folk who have tried to contact me by my RSPB email recently. Short version – it’s broken. So, if you have sent pictures or news or questions and received no reply, my sincere apologies. I’ll get in touch as soon as I can.

    Right then, back to the business at hand. Here’s the picture from Old Moor today…

    For whatever reason…

    • 20 Aug 2019
  • By the Dozen - Sightings, 18 Aug

    Along with all the other birds, mammals, bugs, butterflies, dragonflies, plants and fungi, there were twelve species of wader at Old Moor today! Here’s what was recorded…

    If you haven’t yet seen it, the great white egret is still at Old Moor and showing extremely well. Today it spent much of its time on Wath Ings or the Field Pool. Every visit to Old Moor at present I expect this bird to have moved…

    • 18 Aug 2019
  • Overlap - Sightings, 13 Aug

    Mid-August at Old Moor provides watchers with a terrific range of birds. Those summer visitors (swift, sand martin, hobby) begin to overlap with returning autumn migrants (sandpipers, dunlin, knot).  The result is an incredibly varied picture as you can see below…

    Elsewhere in the Dearne Valley, at Bolton Ings the sightings were provided by John Seeviour and can be found here. Thanks John.

    Meanwhile, from Adwick…

    • 13 Aug 2019
  • Goodbye? - Sightings, 11 Aug.

    Tapping the ‘species-o-meter’ as I left Old Moor this afternoon, it read a not inconsiderable 55 bird species recorded today. Here’s what was seen…

    Although the garganey was fairly easy to find today [the ‘spit’ of Wath Ings], it wasn’t until around 10.30 that the great white egret showed itself. It had been roosting in the willows on the left of Wath Ings and, when it finally…

    • 11 Aug 2019
  • GWE Still - Sightings, 8 Aug

    Another beautiful summer’s day at Old Moor with an impressive range of sightings. Here’s what was reported today…

    It was terrific to see that the great egret was still around today and also that the recent garganey was seen again from Wath Ings Hide.

    Among the more unusual sightings of the day was a report of two jays in the Bird Garden. Regular visitors to Old Moor will know that we do see jay fairly…

    • 8 Aug 2019
  • Strutting and Preening - Sightings, 6 Aug

    Strangely Old Moor’s sightings book was a bit sparse today. It was almost as if many of the regular birders were distracted by events near Fairburn Ings!

    Here’s what was recorded today…

    After the departure of (most of) the black-headed gulls, in August Old Moor is a calmer place. Spring birdsong is replaced by the begging calls of youngsters wanting to be fed, and it’s only when the lapwings

    • 6 Aug 2019
  • Great and Little - Sightings, 4 Aug

    There’s no getting away from it, herons are impressive birds and today at Old Moor there were four species of heron to be seen.

    Here’s the summary of sightings…

    In the 1970s there was no mention of ‘egrets’ in my first birding books. It wasn’t until the late 80s that little egrets first started appearing here in numbers. And quickly they’ve colonised wetlands and become an ‘expected…

    • 4 Aug 2019
  • Quick Sands - Sightings, 1 Aug.

    I know, it’s a bit confusing – the green sandpiper isn’t really green; the common sandpiper isn’t all that common; and the wood sandpiper doesn’t live in a wood or even look much like wood. But all three of those birds ARE at Old Moor right now!

    Here’s today’s summary of sightings…

    The gravel-patterned back of the wood sandpiper was seen on the Wader Scrape today though…

    • 1 Aug 2019
  • And Glamour - Sightings, 30 July

    A quick blog tonight so here are the sightings…

    I’ve already included Wombwell Ings highlights above, but at Edderthorpe today , courtesy of Graham Speight, there were: 209 mallard, five black-tailed godwit, one green sandpiper, 254 lapwing and a garganey. Ta Graham.

    Broomhill too was having its fair share of luck with sightings that included: five common sandpiper, one curlew, two juvenile little ringed…

    • 30 Jul 2019
  • What Next - Sightings, 28 July

    I dunno, I leave Old Moor for a week and, when I come back, everything’s changed! Here’s today’s summary of sightings…

    Apparently, in my absence, the Dearne Valley has had a bit of a heatwave – or deluge – depending on who you speak to. Yesterday five whimbrel dropped in, today just one, but that didn’t stay around for long.

    Lapwing, dunlin and wood sandpiper on Wath Ings this…

    • 28 Jul 2019
  • Tug-of-war - Sightings, 16 July

    It was another glorious warm summer’s day in the Dearne Valley and one chock-full of bird sightings. Here’s today’s summary…

    It’s worth mentioning that not only were there bittern seen today, but that juvenile bearded tits were seen (again) on the Reedbed Trail. Sadly, I don’t have a number for that sighting but I do know that these young birds brought a smile to many visitors’ faces throughout…

    • 16 Jul 2019
  • Sightings, 14 July 2019

    Here is today’s summary of sightings from Old Moor…

    Sadly, there was no sign of yesterday’s black-necked grebe today. However, there was news from the remarkable Adwick Washland courtesy of Nigel Smith. Thanks Nige.

    He reported three grey heron, two little egret, five little grebe, 310 greylag geese, one teal, a brood of tufted duck, around 180 lapwing, three avocet, a ringed plover, three little ringed…

    • 14 Jul 2019
  • Gull-Billed Tern – Sightings, 11 July

    One Bird ID guide says there are only ‘around 400 recorded sightings of gull-billed terns in the UK’. Ever. In an average year, they’ll be about three. So when the news broke that a gull-billed tern was at Adwick Washland last night… well, you can imagine the excitement!

    Here is the summary of sightings from Old Moor today …

    The gull-billed tern is a very rare migrant here in the UK and…

    • 11 Jul 2019
  • Usually Secretive - Sightings, 9 July

    Overcast skies but over SIXTY species of birds at Old Moor today! And among them some absolute crackers! Here’s the summary of sightings…

    On the drive in to Old Moor today, three green woodpeckers could be seen feeding on the ants there. These are large and colourful birds but shy. That said, those folk prepared to loiter around the overflow car park this morning were rewarded with excellent views.

    The

    • 9 Jul 2019