The good weather continues as forecast and I was well overdue a visit to Newby Moor having only been there twice this year all down to the appalling summer we've had. Well the 'Faith Restored' and 'The Good' came into being here today when I found another Whinchat. OK that's just another Whinchat but these sightings definitely restore my faith in the species to some small degree - and I certainly haven't forgotten the Cross of Greet area this breeding season either - and there was more to come today but first other notes here were, 2 Stonechat which unfortunately brings in 'The Bad' as this isn't good news from the location where ten years ago in 1999 I had begun to realise the Stonechat was putting in more appearances and was the beginning of the upturn in the status of the species in and out of the LDBWS recording area, but enough of this as I intend to do an article on 'Ten Years of the Stonechat' when I get round to it. I found c.70 'finches' feeding on thistle heads which turned out to be approximately 50 Linnet and 20 Goldfinch, a 'few' Meadow Pipit were noted including 15 resting up on the wires. I noted just two Painted Lady, a single Small Tortoiseshell, and a Stoat.
Barbondale looking SW from the Bull Pot track.
When Barbondale is seen from this angle you realise that it's just a narrow strip of ancient woodland which broadens out towards the far end, but plays host to a good healthy number of bird species in the summer months. Where the woodland becomes dense in the distance this is the plantation which - by comparison - is both very unattractive and unproductive. The visit here today was all the worth while when I found two more 1st winter Whinchat, 9 Stonechat, at least 14 Meadow Pipit, 2 Reed Bunting, a Dipper, Buzzard and a Kestrel. At one point c.250 'corvids' went up into the air on the fell-side and were eventually found to be predominantly Rook with 'some' Carrion Crow and Jackdaw.