Here in the Aire Valley we hope you are all keeping well during this second lockdown. We're here to bring you round 3 of our Aire Valley Autumn rainbow, this week of course is yellow!

So grab a cuppa and read on to be transported to our lovely sites.                                                           

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 (Silver birch- Jodie Randall)

                                                    

 The first yellow that springs to mind in autumn is of course the stunning colours of leaves at this time of year, which we have of course talked about in our previous two blogs.

And we make no apologies for mentioning it in this one too! 

Trees found at our Aire Valley sites such as hazel (pictured left) and silver birch (pictured right) put on a gorgeous display of yellows.

The Riverbank Trail at Fairburn Ings is a great place to spot these trees and enjoy an autumn woodland walk, while the entrance to St Aidan's also showcases some lovely autumnal colours.

 Short eared owls (pictured left), with their striking yellow eyes, are well worth a mention in this blog about yellow.

Their lovely yellow colouring shows that these owls are diurnal- preferring to hunt during the day.

This means that their eyes are adapted to hunting in these light levels, as we often see them roaming the Hillside at St Aidan's on autumn afternoons.

Other owls such as the long eared owl are nocturnal, so they typically have orange eyes as they hunt at night. Pretty cool! 

(Short eared owl- Karen Speight)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              (Goldfinch- Ben Andrew)

Another bird we have to talk about is the goldfinch (pictured right).

These might be a bird that many of you see in your gardens and green spaces, but when you look closely, you can see just how beautiful they are.

With bold red on their faces and striking yellow patches on their wings, these are more than just your average garden birds. 

In winter many goldfinches migrate as far south as Spain, while some also decide to sit out the colder months here in the UK.

We've been seeing decent-sized flocks of goldfinches on our bird feeders at both sites, with as many as 14 greenfinches (that we've counted so far) in amongst the goldfinches at St Aidan's!

Fantastic stuff. 

Our final bird in the yellow category is an autumn arrival.

While the golden plover does breed in the UK, many other birds join our breeding population in winter from areas including Iceland and Northern Europe.

This swells the number of golden plover in the UK to an impressive 420,000 birds

We're fortunate to see large flocks of these lovely birds during colder weather, especially around the Ridge and Furrow at St Aidan's.

In winter they are reported to fly in "fairly tight formation with rapid, twinkling wingbeats".

We love the idea of twinkling wingbeats, what a great description!

 

(Golden plover- Paul Turner)

We hope you've enjoyed this blog on all the yellows that are out there in the Aire Valley this autumn.

We hope to welcome you on site soon, and for those of you not currently able to visit us, we hope this have given you a flavour of what is about in the Aire Valley, 

All the best, 

Nicole. 

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