Sunday, February 24, 2008

Forge Valley Feeding Station




Long Tailed Tit

Marsh Tit

Coal Tit

Great Tit

Blue Tit


Grey Squirrel

A cold frosty morning in February and where better to visit then Forge Valley Feeding Station, why, because I can stay in the car and keep warmish (got to put the window down of course). At this time of year the feeding station is buzzing with bird life with 5 species of tit, nuthatch, Chaffinch, Robin, Dunnock, Blackbird, Treecreeper, Wood Pigeon and the ever resident Grey Squirrels.

Common Seal

Dropped in to Scarborough Harbour for a check of any possible white winged gulls in the area and to my surprise I found this little Common Seal pup taking a rest on the slipway. At first I thought the seal didn't look well, its eyes constantly closed, not really gaining its balance on the slipway. I was just about to give the Scarborough Sea Life Centre a call for them to send out a member of staff when the little chap came to life and swam off in to the distance. We do get the occasional seal in the harbour but not usually out of the water, they are magnificent creatures.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Black-Bellied Dipper

A Black-bellied Dipper has been showing very well on the river opposite the turn off to Top Hill Low on the A163. Probably the closest I have got to a Dipper for a long time, this bird was constantly swimming in the river looking for food. Don't know much about this bird, have nothing in any of my field guides, I do know it is a sub-species of the Common Dipper, so any information oabout this bird would be appreciated.

Top Hills Smew

The Smew have returned to Top Hill Low Nature Reserve on Watton Pits, 2 drakes and 1 redhead are now present. Both drakes have started displaying at the female, all the above shots taken at extreme distance hence the quality of the blown up shots.

More Peregrines

At last I have managed to get a couple of flight shots of the Peregrines, but on a dull day, note the white sky. On one sunny day last week I was watching them hunting, as you can see from the above shot, the male had a go at a passing Fulmar. I was actually taking a picture of the Fulmar and didn't even see the Peregrine come in to the frame of the camera, hence the bird being out of focus, thats how quick this amazing falcon attacks its prey.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Return of the Gannet




Its approaching that time of year again when the "Seabird City" at RSPB Bempton Cliffs Reserve is starting to welcome back its residents. The Gannets have returned already in big numbers and have started nest building, the cliffs are still very silent with no calls of Guillemot, Razorbill or Puffin which are still yet to arrive, with the later being the last to return, normally around mid march.
Also on the top fields and scrub you can find Stonechat, Tree Sparrow, Reed Bunting and birds of prey such as Short Eared Owl, Kestrel, Merlin, Sparrowhawk and Peregrine Falcon.
If you haven't visited Bempton before you are missing a true spectacle of nature, you have to make the effort and I can guarantee that you will be amazed with the sights and sounds of this truely amazing reserve.
For more information on RSPB Bempton Cliffs click on the link below:

Winter Visitors



A large influx of Fieldfares and Redwings have recently visited the Scarborough area with over 70 Fieldfare and 30 Redwings seen in fields north of Flixton and similar numbers also seen in the fields at the back of the wireless station off racecourse road.