Saturday 9th July 2005
1410 – 1600hr
Weather and Sky:
A hot fair weather afternoon following a similar morning. Wind: E to NE variable calm to F3 variable. Temp: 23 dp 15. Visibility: Leck Fells, NNW / Drax, E hazy max. Cloud: initially cirrostratus and cirrus fibratus to NW, very translucent and cirrostratus to E. 6ok but all translucent to sun. Later, some cumulus mediocris developing the east. Pressure: gradual rise over last 24 hours, 1026. Last two days an improvement following a week of poor weather.
Generally a big influx of gulls into the area since last visit, six days ago. High gull arrivals from the NE, E and SE were noted throughout the visit. Most were Black-headed, but Lesser BB’s were on the move as well. No juvs were seen. Nearly all of the departures were away, gaining height to the north-west. Far out over Airedale, a different stream were moving west or north-west, in addition to much high soaring above the traditional feeding fields and areas. Loafing Black-headed Gulls were well spread over the water and on the walls and pitching around it in addition to several large groups accompanying the mowing that was occurring in several localities. Only nine Swifts were seen, all were very high, in ones and two’s and with a south-westerly drift, with the breeze in this occasion. A total of fifteen Sand Martins (first this autumn) were noted in two groups feeding high above the north flank of the water-shed on the updraft, together with a couple of House Martins. All just disappeared and assumed, moved on quickly. A total of eight Curlew passed through, west in three groups all calling as they went. Plenty Linnets about, but many fewer Meadow Pipits and Pied Wagtails gone.
Swift 9 > SW
Sand Martin 15 > SW
Curlew 8 > W
Gulls: see below.
Black-headed Gull 505, loafers feeders and fly-throughs.
Lesser black-backed Gull 47, ditto.
Common Gull 2 loafing.