Tuesday, 28 April 2015

MOULTON QUARRY 28/04/2015

On my last visit to the site I had been spoilt by returning warblers and Sandmartins (well 4 birds) and three Wheatears. Also on the last few visits to the site there was a noticeable increase in visitors to the site. Mostly dog walkers, the odd horserider which is fine but more importantly more youngsters turning up on moto-cross bikes. Don't get me wrong I could appreciate why the quarry was an interesting place to ride. But they were a nuisance volume wise.
I arrived on the site today and things didn't look 'right'. It was windy so wasn't expecting to much but a glance over the quarry floor there was rubbish everywhere further scanning revealed no activity at the Sandmartins colony in fact no birds even flitting around. Now I know the bikes aren't responsible by means of riding, the slope is 90° degrees straight up, there is still some holes from last year but the new holes gone. Given the very dry soil, followed by rain, then a frost and strong winds has caused a 'collapse', not good. What's worse I only saw two Sandmartins all day, last year it was only 12 birds two is awful though.

Normally if on my bike this sort of thing on a footpath would annoy me. But I am not even going to grumble, in fact I'll give the landowner a "virtual thumbs up" no motorbike (mountain bike can be chucked over) can get through.
Whilst giving my seal of approval standing on the earth mound considering if I could do a Steve McQueen impression this bugger flew past fast
Looking directly into the sun it's horribly back lit, but pleasing to see it taking it's prey back to nesting site. The Buzzards were on form but still it was probably the worse visit I've had I mean I'm posting a Linnet for Christs sakes
However the weirdest bird of the day was with the regular Mistle Thrush....
A Fieldfare!! That has to be the latest I've seen one around here. It looked lost.  Sums up my birding day perfectly wrong bird, wrong place, wrong time and dodgy photo(s)

10 comments:

  1. This doesn't sound good.
    Your standards are so high that with the exception of the Sand Martens I would have called it a good day.

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    1. I think the combination of strong wind, Sandmartins and what happened on site effected what I thought if the day, after all I had a Kestrel zip past very close which is always good

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  2. HI Douglas Pity the birds did not turn up for you however that is a lovely composed image of the Linnet. Iteresting to hear about the few Sand Martins, that's a bit worrying. I took a South African couple out birding on Monday and we had a marvellous day adn chalked up 57 different species of birds and through in a few interesting sites as well. They loved it as did myself.

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    1. After all the luck I've had I was due a bad day. Glad to hear your friends from Africa had a good visit. It must be weird for them seeing wildlife from their country over here

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  3. Birds are incredibly adaptable Doug, the Sand Martins will find another suitable location but sadly not for you to watch and enjoy. I had a Fieldfare a couple of years ago in Boston, in May!!! Don't belittle your Linnet image, it's a cracker!

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    1. You're right Paul, considering the quarry could be up and working again maybe later in the year perhaps it's for the better it's weird how two remain in the area so I've not completely given up on them

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  4. Pressures on the environment everywhere Douglas .....

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    1. I'm just amazed at such a remote location the Human Plague can still be present

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  5. Sorry to hear of the plight of the Sand Martins, Doug. I hope they haven't given up and moved on.

    I'm not sure that the entrance restriction put in by the farmer will stand up to determined effort by the off-roaders.

    Nowt wrong with a Linnet! But what the heck's a Fieldfare doing there!

    Another really great post - interesting and beutifully illustrated.

    Best wishes - - - - - Richard

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    1. I'm hoping the Sandmartins haven't given up, two remain so maybe some late comers may boost numbers.
      The Fieldfare shocked me, with me looking into the sun I thought I found an Ouzel. Everywhere the Mistle Thrush went so did the Fieldfare.
      I was speaking to the person about the posts, it's a temporary measure until he gets full permission to put in a proper solution, it's a shame because he's handed over a big chunk of land for people to enjoy and for nature and this is his reward for his generosity, makes me wonder at times.

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