Oxenhope.... chats and lessers in abundance!... 01-05-2010
Raven... montage... dig that diamond tail!! (c) 2010
Insect Soup.... perhaps thats why swift and hirundine numbers were down? (c) 2010
Lessers ploughing through!.... (c) 2010
W F2 becoming N F1 then NE F1 then CALM, 6degC, 65km, 1/8 then 8/8 then 1/8, QNH 1008 rising.
0650 - 1245hr
First hour at the Spring watchpoint....Brilliant sunshine initially with cloud advancing and reducing base producing a period of fog.... bitter cold and time to move.... then warming up quickly under rapidly clearing skies but wind on the swing into the NE then calm. With the exception of copious numbers of Wheatear spread over a wide area (25 counted but extended scoping of the dry stone walls would have produced more) and a good movement north of Lesser black backed Gulls now in full swing, very little in the sky whatsoever... possibly the insect soup if as prolific elsewhere as here was holding the Swifts and hirundines back but what ever the case... yesterday was not to be repeated! Lesser black backed Gulls were moving at a variety of levels with many spiraling down from great height to the water before moving off again following a refresh!.... a limited amount of sky scoping high over both Airedale and Calderdale revealed that those counted were just the tip of the iceburg with a good high level flow thermaling through that could only be picked up in this way. Cuckoos were calling from the vallies at either side and a Raven soaring high south was interesting.
Lesser black backed Gull 129 > mainly N.... scoping over Airedale would have picked up many more...
Swallow 13 > N
Raven 1 > S
Sand Martin 1 > N
Swift 1 > N
Meadow Pipit 1 > N
House Martin 5 > N
Wheatear 23 + more not counted... some were creaping north.
Here below are some snaps of just a few of the closer "ears" located.....
Wheatears Wheatears more Wheatears and Wheatears.... seven images (c) 2010