• Or Listen - Sightings, 16 May

    It’s hard not to be enthusiastic when the lanes of Old Moor are looking so full and verdant right now. Each one invites you to take some time, to stand and watch – or listen. None more so than ‘Green Lane’ – the route between the Family Hide and Wath Ings.

    More on that in a moment, but first today’s sightings…

    One visitor, Cathy Thornton, was exploring the path to the right…

    • 16 May 2019
  • And Damsels - Sightings, 14 May

    The rising temperatures of the last few days meant that Old Moor's lanes were dotted with butterflies and - according to one visitor - the first of the damselflies, the blue-tailed, were "everywhere"!

    Here's the summary of what was seen today...

    From Adwick Washland, Gary Stones provided sightings and John Seeviour tweeted the update from Bolton Ings. Thanks both!

    On the subject of insects, the first…

    • 14 May 2019
  • Speeding Blackcap - Sightings, 12 May

    At last a day of warmth! Okay, possibly over-reacting there but the combination of a sunshine AND a bit of heat really made a difference to the lanes of Old Moor. Here’s what was seen…

    I didn’t get a chance to visit today but luckily Nigel Smith provided the picture from a busy Adwick Washland. Forty avocet, around twenty redshank, four ringed plover, one little ringed plover, a dunlin, one black-tailed…

    • 12 May 2019
  • Thirty-two - Sightings, 9 May

    Copying the sightings from Old Moor’s record book tonight, there was one that gave me pause. Can you see which one? Ay, did the recorder really mean 32 dunlin? I mean, that’s a lot of dunlin – for us anyway.

    Here’s the summary…

    But then a quick check on Gary Stone’s tweet from Adwick tonight revealed twenty of these tiny waders over there!

    While I’m on, here’s the Bolton…

    • 9 May 2019
  • Just to their right - Sightings, 7 May

    Last Friday Old Moor welcomed Branston U3A Natural History Group. Its eleven members clocked up an impressive list of 59 bird species. Well done all!

    Here’s what was seen around the Old Moor today…

    For the record, 57 species of bird were seen by visitors today. But before I go on to that, remember that unusual roe deer sighting from Sunday? Here’s a photograph from Matthew Christou. Thanks Matthew…

    • 7 May 2019
  • Bufflehead and Doe – Sightings, 5 May

    ‘Buffle-what?’ ‘Is that even a bird?’ - Two of the responses this morning when – at least for the very earliest visitors – the news was shared that yesterday’s female bufflehead was still on Wath Ings.

    Here’s what else was seen today…

    It’s strange to think of it now, but collared doves only began breeding in the UK sixty-odd years ago. There’ll be plenty of…

    • 5 May 2019
  • April WEX - Planting Wildflowers

    Hello! Last weekend our WEX group had their monthly meeting and had a great session as per usual. Freddie was there and he has written another of his excellent, and very informative, blogs reporting what they did.

    Over to Freddie and enjoy. :) 

    This month at WEX we were planting wildflower seeds for birds and other wildlife. Insects are on the decline so its really important to help them on their way by planting wildflower…

    • 5 May 2019
  • Three Wood - Sightings, 2 May

    Early birder, Russ Haywood started the day off well by spotting a red kite (accompanied by a buzzard) sailing over Old Moor’s Visitor Centre at 09.30. Sure enough, it was another busy day in the Dearne Valley.

    Here’s what was seen…

    That black-tailed godwit in full summer garb on the Field Pool was another new addition as was the arctic tern over the Mere picked up by Chris Harris later in the day.

    • 2 May 2019
  • Three More! - Sightings, 30 April

    The morning murk might have lingered for a bit, but when it lifted – what a day! Not only was it sunny and warm but three new bird species returned to Old Moor from their winter travels.

    Here’s the summary of sightings …

    Today the first swift began hawking above the Mere; a sedge warbler announced his presence at Wath Ings with a tune from scratch; and the first hobby sailed across the reserve around…

    • 30 Apr 2019
  • Bittern Watch - Sightings, 28 Apr

    Seeing one bittern is unusual enough, but suppose you saw two, flying together over the reedbeds of Old Moor! Would that be twice as rare? If so, that is exactly what some lucky visitors saw this afternoon in an incredible glimpse into the world of this secretive bird.

    More on that in a minute, but first the summary of sightings from Old Moor today…

    The news from Adwick Washland today was provided courtesy of…

    • 28 Apr 2019
  • Sightings, 25 Apr 19

    Ah, those April showers! Still, as ever, there was much to be enjoyed - not least the fact that there were two Mediterranean gulls on the Wader Scrape today. The birds indulged in various displays of courtship this afternoon before mating on an island towards the back of the Scrape.

    Looks like the stage is set for a repeat of last year's successful breeding! Here's what else was seen today...

    • 25 Apr 2019
  • ‘Songsick’ - Sightings, 23 Apr

    Not exactly homesickness, more like ‘songsickness’! - Birdsong that is. Ay, my holiday was very nice and everything, but just much, much quieter than I’m used to.

    Today I’m very glad to say, Old Moor’s lanes were anything but quiet. Here’s what was heard – and seen.

    We are very lucky here in the Dearne Valley. With upwards of fifty species of bird currently residing at Old Moor…

    • 23 Apr 2019
  • Filling In - Sightings from Old Moor and the Dearne Valley - 17th April

    Hello there! I'm 'filling in' on the sightings blog this week as Andrew isn't blogging this week. It's been a lovely warm day at Old Moor with lots to report. Apologies in that I don't seem to have the blog template any more so I'll be typing a few lists...

    I'll start with sightings from the Barnsley Birders via Twitter.

    Early this morning they reported 2 drake garganey on the Mere. This…

    • 17 Apr 2019
  • Go! – Sightings, 11 Apr

    It was as if somebody out there fired a starting pistol today – and everything happened all at once! You’ll see what I mean when you scan today’s summary of sightings…

    Bolton Ings news is provided by non-other than John Seeviour and includes a lesser whitethroat, three goldeneye, six chiffchaff and four blackcap. A full listing can be found here. Thanks John.

    Adwick Washland’s sightings from…

    • 11 Apr 2019
  • Anywhere - Sightings, 9 April

    What do a marsh harrier, an Egyptian goose and a brambling have in common? …Give up? – They were all seen today at Old Moor of course!

    Here’s the list…

    At Bolton Ings, the news of the day included: six blackcap, one green woodpecker, a little egret and seven pochard. Full sightings from John Seeviour can be found here. Thanks John.

    From Adwick Washland, Vin Browne reported both peregrine and…

    • 9 Apr 2019
  • Not Very Far - Sightings, 7 April

    If I was to ask you, ‘what colour is spring?’ what would you say? Despite overcast skies in the Dearne Valley today, there was plenty of colour about - and some of it had wings.

    Here is today’s summary of sightings…

    The amazing Karen Williams was Houghton way this morning and recorded fifty-four snipe, eighteen lapwing, eighteen pairs of reed bunting and three yellowhammer at Little Houghton

    • 7 Apr 2019
  • Nippy - Sightings, 4 April

    Evening folks! On a day that felt more like winter than spring, here is the summary of sightings from Old Moor…

    At the remarkable Adwick Washland today, Gary Stones reported: two wheatear (one female), one yellow wagtail, five grey partridge, eleven avocet and three swallow among a full list that can be found here. Thanks Gary.

    The news from Bolton Ings was provided by John Seeviour. His sightings included: two…

    • 4 Apr 2019
  • Arrivals - Sightings, 2 April

    As the winter ducks slowly depart, today Old Moor welcomed back another spring migrant, the blackcap.

    Here is today’s summary of sightings…

    At Adwick Washland, Gary Stones provided sightings that included: seven avocet, twenty or more redshank, four ringed plover, one little ringed plover and a black-tailed godwit. The Egyptian and the pink-footed goose were still present and a blackcap could be found here…

    • 2 Apr 2019
  • Playful - Sightings, 31 Mar

    Finally the lanes of Old Moor resound with the cheery songs of chiffchaff, robin, dunnock, tree sparrow, chaffinch, great and blue tit. Full on spring at last!

    Things are moving at a pace and down on the Reedbed Trail, one mother proudly paraded her brood – a coot with three young and (unless you know differently) the first hatch of 2019.

    Here is today’s summary of sightings…

    From Adwick Washland,…

    • 31 Mar 2019
  • March WEX - Migration and Birds in Decline

    Hello again. It's time once more for another of our WEX blogs. As per usual, it's written by the very knowledgeable Freddie and this time we have photos from WEX George. Thanks go to you both, great job!

    This time at WEX we did all about why Swifts and other birds are in decline. Firstly, I did a word search on the theme of migration. Then, because there were a few new people, we played the name game. This is…

    • 31 Mar 2019
  • Sprung! - Sightings, 28 Mar

    Before the all-important sightings from today, here’s a quick reminder of the events coming up throughout April at Old Moor. A complete list can be found here. In addition, there are a number of guided walks coming up, the next being April 2 or – if you are feeling even more adventurous – there’s a dawn chorus walk on April 28! Full details can be found on the events tab of our Facebook page.

    • 28 Mar 2019
  • Yet More - Sightings, 26 Mar

    Not one but two bitterns showed themselves at the same time this afternoon! Extremely lucky watchers in the Bittern Hide enjoyed brilliant views of these two enigmatic birds as they appeared together on the rear bank of the Mere.

    Here is the summary of today’s sightings…

    First thing this morning, keen-eyed observers saw a red kite sail over the Old Moor Visitor Centre heading south. And yes, those four…

    • 26 Mar 2019
  • On Their Way - Sightings, 24 Mar

    Today Old Moor welcomed the Shropshire Ornithological Society – a group of canny birders who clearly know a good day when they see one!

    Here’s the summary of sightings…

    Not only were those four waxwings still around, near a certain supermarket, but today a black-necked grebe dropped into the main marsh at Wath Ings. Sadly, views of the grebe weren’t the best largely due to the sheer amount of sunlight…

    • 24 Mar 2019
  • Deja Two - Sightings, 21 Mar

    I dunno, a couple of days of better weather and a spring equinox and everything changes!

    Here is the summary of sightings from today…

    From Bolton Ings, John Seeviour recorded eight chiffchaff, two green woodpecker and a jay among a full list that can be found here. Thanks John.

    John Clarkson at Edderthorpe reported that the recent smew was still present along with a pintail, two oystercatcher, three redshank and…

    • 21 Mar 2019
  • Curious - Sightings, 19 Mar

    Birds held back by those recent westerly winds are finally on the move and today once again it felt like spring at Old Moor.

    Here’s the summary of sightings…

    Since the end of last week, visitors to Old Moor have been doing a bit of a detour, via Aldi. And why not? After all, nature lovers have to shop. Ah, but it hasn’t been those low, low prices* that have drawn watchers to the nearby supermarket. No, the…

    • 19 Mar 2019