Thursday, 25 June 2015


Tuesday was an excellent day chat-wise, though ten Stonechat isn't anything of significance, but my best in 6 years and good to find them at the three locations visited, and the weather was excellent too. The plan was first to check out Harrisend, and then Hawthornthwaite on the west and east side, and I succeeded in doing all three.

Stonechat Gary Jones 

Harrisend produced the best result of the day and I found 6 Stonechat there, seen as two pairs, one of which had two young. Also noted, 23 Meadow Pipit4 Redpoll, 3 Willow Warbler, 2 Reed Bunting, 2 Wren, 2 Jay, and a Linnet. I flushed a Snipe ahead of me out of a damp area, raptors seen 2 Buzzard, butterflies were 3 Small Heath.

Kestrel. Noushka Dufort @ 1000-Pattes

Kestrel which I saw over Harrisend, high and soaring on the thermals, suddenly went into a spectacular stoop. I've never seen a Kestrel stoop before and it was difficult to keep up to, but when it put the brakes on I saw it go to chase another Kestrel which it had obviously seen from the height and distance....amazing, both these birds were female. I watched these two for several minutes, during which time the bird being attacked went circling higher and higher until it took to soaring on thermals, having outrun and outmanoeuvred it's attacker. 

On Hawthornthwaite Fell I found a pair of Stonechat, c.40 Sand Martin were impressive flying up and down the stream. Otherwise, just 2 Meadow Pipit, a Kestrel, and a Small Copper butterfly seen.

On the east side of Hawthornthwaite I found another 2 Stonechat, these two were seen as a male and young bird. I couldn't believe these two were alone, but despite a twenty minute watch no others seen. I saw 4 Meadow Pipit, 3 Wren, 2 Willow Warbler, and a Small Heath butterfly.

At Marshaw it was good to find a pair of successful breeding Common Sandpiper, they were alarmed at my presence and were calling at two young, also seen was a Goldcrest.

Thanks to Gary for the male, female, and young Stonechat, and to Noushka for the Kestrel, excellent on all counts and much appreciated.


Warren Baker said...

Good to hear positive news on the 'Chat' front Pete :-)

Martin Jump said...

Lets hope the Stonechat numbers keep building up Pete,nice to know that you`ve finally seen the common sand at Marshaw.

Pete Woodruff said...

Yes, 'twas a good day for me Warren.

And excellent to see the young Common Sandpiper too Martin.