Thursday, October 22, 2009

Wycoller Ark... trans Pennine traffic! 22-10-2009

Wycoller Ark... through the haze and under a featureless stratus sky (c) 2009

Crow Hill on the south horizon (c) 2009

Wolf Stones on the north horizon across Hob Ing (c) 2009

Wycoller Ark, Trawden (Lancashire, England)
Thursday 22 October 2009
Counting period: 7:45-12:45
Weather: ESE F3, 9degC, 1000m improving 10km, 9/8 fog startus and featureles stratus, QNH 995 rising 998
Observers: Howard Creber

Moving Birds:

Golden Plover 12 -
Fieldfare 182 -
Greenfinch 3 -
Lapwing 3 -
Redwing 313 -
Goldfinch 41 -
Black-headed Gull 10 -
Jackdaw 15 -
Siskin 6 -
Woodpigeon - 6
Carrion Crow 2 -
Lesser Redpoll 5 -
Swallow 1 -
Starling - 1025
Snow Bunting 1 -
alba wagtail sp. 2 -
Chaffinch 16 -

Totals: 1643 individuals, 17 species, 5:00 hours

The site certainly has a mystique all of it`s own! With landmarks and landforms such as Hanging Stone, Hob Ing, Man Stone (a ghoulish looking erect stone presiding over the col -looks like the fabled Mothman), Wolf Stones and the ancient Coombe Cross.... the upturned ark!! and what else can one expect?... not to mention the backdrop of Pendle Hill, with its well known ladies - Demdike, Chattox and Bulcocks !!!. No wonder this area inspired the imagination of the Bronte`s.

Near the Lancashire / Yorkshire boundary with purpose to monitor the avain traffic twixt the two Counties.

Visibility wasn`t good, any clear spells often being punctuated by hill shrouding fog stratus from the south. However, these conditions... better than at Oxenhope across the basin and the general ambience of the site did not put off the birds I am pleased to say. Most notable was a strong movement of Starlings NW - all 17 squadrons followed precisely the same route and elevation (circa 200 feet above ground level - site is over 350 metres asl). It was pretty clear they were following the line of the valley from the south east, over the col out into Lancashire. Squadrons of Starlings powering through like this really are a spectacular sight...... There was also a good movement of winter thrushes in the opposite direction and also various finch species evacuating Lancashire for West Yorkshire and beyond no doubt. Dave joined me for the latter part of the stay and we were pleasantly suprised to see a late Swallow moving South.... almost overhead! which we took as a confimatory sign of the migration route we were on. All in all a very good session apart from me stoving in David`s car boot with my Landy at the end - whoops !!!!!

Howard Creber


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home