Wednesday, 30 August 2017

2018 Wildlife Calendar ready!

My new 2018 Yorkshire Wildlife Calendar is ready!
Little Owls (c) 2017 Ben Coneyworth
A unique feature of the calendar is that it includes 300+  lines of info of what wildlife to see, & when & where to see it.
Grey Wagtail (c) 2017 Mike Woods

My new 2018 Yorkshire Wildlife Calendar is hot off the press. It features photos of Little Owls, Hen Harrier, Lapwing, Puffins, Turnstone, Peregrine, Grey Wagtail, Bearded Tit, Wheatear, Woodcock, Great Spotted Woodpecker and Waxwings.  A Broad-Bodied Chaser dragonfly is the sole representative of non-avian wildlife.  
Hen Harrier
Broad-Bodied Chaser
All photos were taken in Yorkshire, quite a few of them during my birdwatching classes either by myself or people on my course incl: Ben Coneyworth, Tony Robinson and Mike Woods.  Cost £9.25 for 1 (incl P & P) to UK addresses only.  Cost £8 if collecting in person [2 calendars are £17.58, and 3 calendars are £26.14 by post]   
Woodcock (c) 2017 Tony Robinson

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Holiday Snaps 3

I've been sent some new images since last week's post.  They cover a variety of species, some taken at far-flung places, some taken nearer to home.  Many of the species taken beyond Yorkshire, could have been taken in Yorkshire, or are species we see regularly.  40 years ago we may have had many casual meetings with such lovely birds as Whinchats, now, if we encounter them at all, they tend to be on migration.
These Red Kites were taken at Dumfries and Galloway 
(c) 2017 Dave Hill
Red Kite 
The following Whinchat photos were taken at RSPB St Aidan's 
(c) 2017 Mike Woods
 Whinchat and approaching "Grey Pate"
 This immature Little Owl was also taken at St Aidan's.
Immature Little Owl (c) 2017 Mike Woods
 The Kingfisher was taken a week earlier at RSPB Old Moor
Kingfisher (c) 2017 Mike Woods
Great Crested Grebe (c) 2017 Mike Woods
Record shot of Buzzard and Red Kite
(c) 2017 Mike Woods
Hawker Dragonfly Species (c) 2017 Mike Woods
 Meanwhile in Hutton Cranswick this female Sparrowhawk was taken through glass.
Sparrowhawk (c) 2017 Lynn Hall
 The only shots from foreign parts were these Cormorants taken in either Denmark or Sweden!
Cormorant (c) 2017 Mike Hind

Wednesday, 23 August 2017

More Holiday Snaps

I haven't exactly been inundated with holiday snaps since the previous tranche last month.  However, Dick from Thursday morning recently had a close encounter with a Barn Owl.  He was driving in North Yorkshire in the area towards Cleveland almost at midday, when he suddenly spotted it on a farm wall.  Its behaviour was a little strange as it permitted Dick to stop his car and then get an amazing set of snaps without it flying off.  The Barn Owl appears to have dried blood around its bill, and also its talons are caked in blood too.  The latter suggests it may have recently enjoyed a rather full meal, so this may have been the reason it stayed on the farmer's wall, rather than because it was unwell.  Certainly, there is no sign of other damage apart from the ruffled back feathers.  Had it survived a skirmish with a cat?   
All photos (c) 2017 Dick Watson 
Barn Owl

Monday, 14 August 2017

Autumn Vacancies

There are less than 4 weeks before the Autumn course starts, and there are a few vacancies on Friday, Wednesday and Thursday afternoons.  Migration is the keyword of the term, and initially we will be encountering summer migrants as they prepare to leave these shores.  We will also spend some time identifying waders at a variety of seashore and estuarine locations.  Some people find waders tricky, so I will do my best to point out out all the key features.  Later, winter migrants will arrive, and these will be identified too.  Late last Autumn the star birds were probably two confiding Hen Harriers and several Short-eared Owls, and if they reappear, the intention will be to connect with them once more.  

Peregrine - last term's star photograph, taken in the company of the Wednesday afternoon group.  In the Autumn we are most likely to find one of these looking far more active whilst it is harassing the waders on the Humber estuary!
 Bearded Tits - at Ness End
Autumn is the best time to see these charismatic birds 
 Wryneck - at Spurn
One of Autumn's unusual birds, which we'll try and see if we get an influx on the coast
 Moulting male Redstart  - on migration at Spurn
 Stonechat - this beauty over-winters with us
Ring Ouzel - on migration at Spurn
 Snow Bunting - we may encounter these later in the term
 Goldcrest - some years thousands appear on the coast
 Pallas's Warbler - this is less common than the previous bird
 Rough-legged Buzzard
 Great Grey Shrike - 2 years ago these were eating many of the exhausted Goldcrests
 Bar-tailed Godwit in breeding plumage
 Black-tailed Godwit
 Spotted Redshank
 Water [as thin as a] Rail
 Hen Harrier - the star bird of last Autumn
 Short-eared Owls - always popular with the classes
Bewick's Swan
 Starling Murmuration