Friday, March 25, 2005


Thanks for the clarification Brian and beware "High Herons"!

----- Original Message -----
From: Brian Sumner
To: [vismig]
Sent: Friday, March 25, 2005 7:46 PM
Subject: [vismig] Herons @ Cold Edge.

Mick, Dave et all
also had 4 Heron on the moor this a.m. at Cold Edge where I have, not had them before, this was due to mega amounts of spawning frogs last weekend which have all gone now apart from quite a few in the dam overflow. All the ponds on the moor are packed solid with spawn, which seems to be a bit of a delicacy to the Herons.


MARCH 2005 – Comments, Reports and Points of Interest

MARCH 2005 – Comments, Reports and Points of Interest.

As an experiment and as a means of access to these VISIBLE MIGRATION pages for persons wishing to contribute in any way to our VISIBLE MIGRATION knowledge. I intend to set up a MONTHLY OPEN POST, just like this, to which those interested in contributing can as "comments" post and add their visible migration sightings, reports, questions, comments, arrivals, populations and congregations of vis species (whether moving or not), background information and the like. In fact anything likely to be of interest to the vis watcher can be included. As Theo says, the opportunity to improve communication locally (or even wider) on this subject is exciting and just too good to miss! These pages are primarily relative to the Bradford Ornithological Group (and surrounding) area but as Visible Migration is Nation wide and beyond, any other background from elsewhere is of great interest to us here in our own small world of Bradford.

You can still send longer items or reports and the like to me, via any of the reporting systems already in place and if you ask, these will be passed on to me for uploading but for anything important or movements of vis species currently happening (especially if they are coming our way), please use this system, or telephone communication to give earliest warning possible.

Your posted "comment" will be seen immediately as a posted comment, tagged to this monthly mail, by anyone wishing to look and is a very easy way to appraise us all immediately (that is the most important thing – "immediately") of your visible migration sightings or anything in that line. I will then upload the postings to the full site as soon as I am able.

Any ideas as to how we can improve or add to this system of communication will be very welcome. It will be interesting to see how much interest there really is in our local VISIBLE MIGRATION now we have a means of pulling all the local stuff together, whilst it is happening.

Please remember to include your name, date, location, time, species, flight directions, contact details (if you want a reply) and the like. Anonymous postings may not be uploaded and may not even be recognised by our system. Please also keep to topic "Visible Migration".

If this system works, it may well be possible to develop it further. It is the regular vis / migratory species and their regular movements we are interested in, not the twithcable scarcities or uncommon local breeders which have no place here on these pages.

Please add your posting below by selecting the "COMMENTS" option directly below this mail and following the instructions. To add to our knowledge, why not get out this Easter, give it a try and report back? As you will see there have been Meadow Pipits moving today and they will on suitable days continue for a good while yet. Whilst not in mass "autumn" numbers these and the humble Pied Wagtails are very much of interest to us, where ever you see them moving! Swallows will be comming soon together with lots more spring vis - give it a try!!

Best Wishes,

Watchpoint 25-03-2005

Members only watchpoint 25-03-2005
Friday 25th March 2005 (Good Friday)
0805hr - 1130hr. (Reduced version).
Weather and Sky:
A deteriorating, then improving morning, with early mist, very low cloud and sheets of driving drizzle. Not much wind. Becoming warmer and visibility improving after 1000hr.

Initial prolonged silence with hardly a bird to be seen or heard in the sky, with only c20 mips over, all going N – NW before 1000hr. No congregations of mipits at all were noted in the general area. Then, all change and in obvious conjunction with the mipit broad front arrival and movement over Cold Edge (of which Brian, on the front line, gave timely warning), we were getting them over here as well. Visibility to the SSE had improved to Emley Moor, with clearing skies, the direction from wence the pipits came. The arrive of the move was immediately detectable by the frequent sound of overhead vis on the wing. Binocular and scope exploration of the sky revealed mipits on the move at all ranges as well as overhead. In addition there was a good spread in the flight levels of the moving birds All were moving in a northerly direction but to be more accurate between N – NW. Most were in threes to tens with the largest group being over twenty. By 1100hr this movement had slowed considerably and by 1130 had almost stopped. Notably today only a very few gulls and waders seen to be on the move. The most interesting birds of the day were firstly, two Collared Doves flying past to the NW @ 0940hr and three Long-tailed Tits, striking out, west and continuing on over the open moor at 1120hr. Could this NW movement by Collared Dove, which has been seen here before be continued range expansion? As you Brian, we had Herons, today. Last year I just discounted them but this year I intend to enumerate even if they are only just commuting between the froggeries on the moor and the heronries in the valleys, to which the flight lines are obvious. Last year, after making the decision to discount, I did regret it as I am certain that there was some very high movement of uncertain nature / direction and definitely not related to heronries known by me. Herons are very big birds and can be seen and followed for very long distances with the optics of today. With the exception of long feeding flights, anyone got any experience of Heron movements at all?

Moving Birds:
Meadow Pipit 302 > N – NW
alba 6 > N
Chaffinch 3 > NW
Goldfinch 2 > W
Collared Dove 2 > NW
Long tailed Tit 3 > W
BH Gull 5 > N
LBB Gull 10 > NW
Lapwing 3 > N
Golden Plover 18 > NE
Grey Heron 1 > NW and 1 > NE
Starling 165 total > northerly
Jackdaw 17 > N

Goldeneye 4
Redshank 2
Oystercatcher 1
Curlew, most now moved on.
Golden Plover – very noisy and seem settled on high moors
Mips and Sky’s, continued increase in local numbers on territory. Some handy early warnings of overflyers here!


Have made decision to publish reduced version of report on this site - more suited to general interest. Anyone wishing to see full version, please let me know as full details are available.

Cold Edge Dams 25-03-2005

Cold Edge Dams 25-03-2005
Good Friday
Hi Brian
Thanks for your super prompt postings, just got back here and my post (similar scenario) will follow shortly!

----- Original Message -----
From: Brian Sumner
To: [vismig]
Sent: Friday, March 25, 2005 11:24 AM
Subject: [vismig] Cold Edge Dams

0730 - 1045hrs
A poor start with thick mist and heavy drizzle. As the mist cleared the rain got heavier with a cool W F2-3. By 0945 bright skies started to appear in the south and the Mipits started coming.

Meadow Pipit 311 > N & NW
Reed Bunting 15 > N
Golden Plover 66 > NE

4 Heron after frog spawn or frogs.
1 Hare + usual.
All frogs gone from ponds apart from about 60 in the dam overflow.