|Peregrine and prey (c) JR|
A very blustery and windy weekend but mild and frost free. Great slabs of low cloud meant that we seldom saw the sun and all the colour seemed to have been sucked out of the moor.
There was still lots to be seen, especially along the path that heads up towards July’s Meadow, where the feeding programme is continuing to draw in large numbers of finches. There are a several game strips further up towards Beckley along the footpath and they too are providing food and shelter for seed eating birds. Should we encounter harsher weather later in the winter their numbers will almost certainly increase. There was a possible sighting of a female Brambling on Sunday but not seen clearly enough to be certain.
|Wigeon landing (c) Bark|
There is a good mixture of duck species out in front of the first screen including four Pintail, five or six Pochard and several pairs of Gadwall. We have been examining the Teal very carefully as there was an unconfirmed report of a Green-winged Teal. All our careful scoping at the weekend failed to result in our spotting any drake Teal with a vertical rather than a horizontal white stripe.
|Pintail from first screen (c) Noah Gins|
The regular raptors were seen at the weekend. The male Marsh Harrier was starting to display a little in the stiff wind and there were still two other Harriers present, one an adult female the other a more juvenile looking bird.
|Peregrine making off (c) Bark|
|Wigeon from the hide Above (c) JR below (c) Bark|
The leaky bund on Ashgrave has now been mended and we can confidently expect the water-levels in front of the hide to rise to their planned height. This should mean that we see many more waterfowl from the hide and later on there should be more waders around the margins.
|Tail can be a problem in a high wind (c) Bark|
The Year-list has started strongly, as always happens, and Siskin, Redpoll and Nuthatch have all been added in the last few days.
|Fieldfares (c) Bark|