Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Upland Birding

I had an early start this morning which rewarded me with a nice view of a Barn Owl on my way to my moorland destination beyond Harrogate.

The morning was a tough slog, the habitat was full of common birds but walking through it was really not that much fun. A flock of 300 Golden Plover in complete breeding attire was rather cool, and a bit more interesting to look at than during the winter when I've spent days and days looking at them. Waders were fairly evident with Curlew, Lapwing, Snipe and Oystercatcher all showing signs of breeding. Plenty of Red Grouse were bubbling and croaking away, some showing down to a few feet. Several Barn Swallow were recorded, many back on breeding territory with several others noted on passage. A good dozen or so Wheatear were found with several Lesser Redpoll displaying within small plantations amongst what seemed like hundreds of Willow Warblers. However bird of the day was a showy singing Grasshopper Warbler, my first of the year that was reeling in some marshy grassland.

Back on the local patch this evening a new Willow Warbler was singing away, with several Blackcap, Common Whitethroat, Chiffchaff and a single Garden Warbler all heard/seen. The ducklings were down to four today.

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