Monday, 4 September 2017

Up & Down.

Buzzard. Martin Lofgren  Wild Bird Gallery  

With 12 July my last time on Harrisend, I got myself back up there on Friday to be disappointed in finding just one lone male Stonechat, and lucky to find it at that. I spotted the bird on the skyline on the top of the ridge whilst attracted to watching 2 Buzzard soaring high, one of 2 Kestrel seen was in the same view, later it got better when a Peregrine Falcon also joined the raptor festival and was attacked by a Kestrel, at one point I had Buzzard, Kestrel, and Peregrine in my sights at the same time....pretty impressive stuff. 

I had seen a Peregrine Falcon on Hawthornthwaite Fell the last time up there on 17 July, judging by these two sightings, the chances of finding a Peregrine Falcon in Bowland these days is obviously better than that of seeing a Hen Harrier which is at best very slim. I was informed on good authority that the Hawthornthwaite bird was probably from a known breeding site which sounded excellent news with the current climate in Bowland.

I had also seen 2 Raven at the time I was watching the raptor fest, and there was some movement over the fell top, at one time when I looked skyward I saw c.70 Swallow bombing through with a purpose. Six Meadow Pipit seen, and I'd have to call 11 Red Grouse an excellent count on Friday, I don't recall the last time I saw them here on Harrisend Fell.

Butterflies, 10 Red Admiral, 8 Small Copper, and a Small Tortoiseshell.

Meanwhile....back on the ranch!

Nine Little Grebe were on Conder Pool, with a small gathering of up to 60 Lapwing, 2 Little Egret, and the female Tufted Duck now has just three young left. I watched a House Martin still entering a nest at River Winds, saw a Greenshank and Common Sandpiper down the channel, wondering if the latter was going to be the wintering bird at Conder Green. Along the coastal path, a Red Admiral, Speckled Wood, and 10 Large White butterflies seen.

On the Lune Estuary, c.300 Golden Plover, 60 Curlew, 15 Black-tailed Godwit, good numbers of Lapwing and Redshank, but barely a double figure of Dunlin seen, a Great-crested Grebe was on the river.

Garden Birds.

It was good to see a/our garden Robin returned on Friday, a sure sign of the approaching winter, also good to see a juvenile Greenfinch, not to be taken for granted, and certainly not so in our garden. 

Migrant Hawker @ Kent Dagonflies

I was pleasantly surprised to see a Migrant Hawker patrolling the bushes in our garden for a few minutes yesterday afternoon, a very unexpected first.

Thanks to Brian  for the brilliant in flight Hobby header, and to Martin and Marc for the Buzzard and Hawker images.    

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