Friday, 18 December 2009

Another Quick Cold Update

What a glorious morning it was on Rawcliffe Moss mid-morning. Fantastic views through the crystal clear air to the Bowland Fells and Lakeland Mountains, and all covered in snow. The hills and mountains that is, not Rawcliffe Moss!

Once again it was a quick dash out from work to feed. I was tempted to linger (aren't I always?!), but I wanted to make sure I had everything cleared up at work so I could finish for a fortnight. I succeeded in that so I am on leave now until 4th January. All I need now is some weather and some birds.

The first birds I had on 'the moss' were three Buzzards soaring over 'Tree Sparrow' wood and they weren't half being given some stick from a pair of Carrion Crows. A couple of summers ago I remember watching a female Marsh Harrier being mobbed by a Carrion Crow on the moss. She put up with it for so long, then she just turned and gave the Crow a hammering, and it flew off rather hastily!

One of the Buzzards drifted over towards me and I started calling to it and it was hooked. It came straight towards me and straight over my head. I had a full frame in my bins, it's just a pity I didn't have my camera.

The next thing I noticed was the lack of Thrushes. All the Fieldfares had gone other than one or two and Blackbirds only numbered five. I imagine a combination of the cold weather and perhaps that they have been feeding on the hawthorn berries for a while now caused them to move.

I noticed that there was a single Yellowhammer at the feeding station with the Tree Sparrows and the usual three near the Pheasant feeder. Tree Sparrows numbered 216 and Chaffinch 21. Interestingly, yesterday when Phil fed for me he had over 300 Tree Sparrows; the highest count for the winter so far.

I have continued with the snow theme from yesterday and below you will find a few more pictures from Nigel in Canada. Thanks Nigel!

Hawk Owl

Rough-legged Buzzard (Hawk in Canada)

Snowy Owl

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