Durham Bird Club's Castle Lake Nature Reserve

Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Tuesday 29th December 2015

Sightings today with thanks to John Olley and Joe Hughes;

Castle Lake - 23 Redshank, 5 Corn Bunting singing, 1500 Lapwing, 30 Golden Plover, 5 Buzzard, 130 Pink-footed Geese over north-west, 380 Wigeon, 300 Teal, 10 Shoveler and 2 Goldeneye.

Monday, 28 December 2015

Monday 28th December 2015

Today's sightings included the following;

Castle Lake - 1 Shelduck, 1m2f Pintail, 10+ Shoveler, 1m1f Goldeneye, 5 Snipe, 20 Redshank, 5 Great Black-backed Gull over south.

River Stell/A1 Flashes - 3 Little Grebe, 1 Little Egret, 6 Grey Heron, 1 Kestrel, c200 Black-headed Gull, 1 Great Black-backed Gull over south, 30 Pied Wagtail (my highest winter count), 1 Meadow Pipit and 4 Linnet.

Low Hardwick - 3 Barnacle Geese (pictured below), 1 Common Buzzard, 50+ Curlew and 4 Reed Bunting.



Stoneybeck Lake - 31 Canada Geese, 37 Coot, 5 Gadwall, 4 Shelduck, 1 Kestrel, 1 Common Buzzard and another 2 Great Black-backed Gull through south.

A fairly new interpretation board makes interesting reading;

Saturday, 26 December 2015

Saturday 26th December 2015

Sightings from Boxing Day morning.

Stoneybeck Lake - 1 Shelduck, the hybrid Gadwall x Tufted Duck is now here, 1 Kestrel and 22 Curlew. (2 Black Swan's reported here on Christmas day morning with thanks to John Hunter).

Castle Lake - 2 Mute Swan, 3 Shelduck, 8 Tufted Duck (numbers slowly building), 1 male Goldeneye, 1 Grey Heron, 1 Snipe and 16 Redshank.

A1 Flashes - severely flooded with the footpath along the River Stell only just passable, 4 Little Grebe, 1 Grey Heron and 8 Pied Wagtail.

Low Hardwick - also flooded, 130 Greylag Geese, 50+ Canada Geese, 3 Barnacle Geese (first reported at Stoneybeck on Wednesday), 50+ Wigeon, 200+ Golden Plover, 300+ Lapwing, 50+ Curlew, 3 Pied Wagtail and 2 Meadow Pipit.

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Wednesday 23rd December 2015

Sightings from yesterday and today with thanks to John Olley.

Tuesday 22nd December 2015
Stoneybeck Lake - 1 Peregrine, 124 Pink-footed Geese, 80 Greylag Geese, 106 Canada Geese, 70 Teal, 80 Mallard, 44 Gadwall, 50 Coot, 100 Lapwing, 30 Curlew, 2 Mute Swan.

Wednesday 23rd December 2015
Castle Lake - 320 Wigeon, 120 Teal, 14 Shoveler, 5 Shelduck, 120 Mallard, 48 Gadwall, 2 Goldeneye, 950 Lapwing, 12 Redshank, 21 Curlew, 5 Great Black-backed Gull through, 30 Goldfinch, 800 Jackdaw, 4 Skylark, 5 Linnet and 6 Meadow Pipit.

Sunday, 20 December 2015

Sunday 20th December 2015

Sightings from this morning, no fog, no ice, sunny, lots of water and some good birds.

Stoneybeck Lake - looking back to its best, 1 Mute Swan, 1 Whooper Swan, 100 Pink-footed Geese flew in from the south mid-morning, 50+ Greylag Geese, 50+ Canada Geese, various numbers of Wigeon, Gadwall, Mallard, Teal & Coot, 5 Tufted Duck, 5 Grey Partridge, 1 female Kestrel, 20+ Lapwing, 1 Curlew, c120 Fieldfare, 10 Goldfinch and 2 Bullfinch.

Castle Lake - 3 Shelduck, 1 female Pintail, 2 female Goldeneye, 4+ Shoveler, the Gadwall x Tufted Duck hybrid was back again, 2 Cormorant, 30 Golden Plover, 91 Curlew, 18 Redshank and 12 Stock Dove.

A1 Flashes - 15 Curlew.

Distant Whooper Swan on Stoneybeck Lake this morning.

(I make it) exactly 100 Pink-footed Geese on final approach for landing at Stoneybeck.

Monday, 14 December 2015

Monday 14th December 2015

Despite the persistent thick fog, some birds were seen (or heard) today.

Castle Lake - fog too thick to see the lake!, 1 Fieldfare and 2 Mistle Thrush.

River Stell/A1 Flashes - 2 Little Grebe, 5 Redshank, 1 Green Sandpiper and a Kingfisher.

Low Hardwick - 16 Mallard, Skylark over, 20+ Blackbird, 20+ Redwing, a Chiffchaff was heard calling on and off for an hour but despite a search it wasn't seen and 2 Bullfinch.

Fishburn Lake - 2 Goldcrest, 1 Treecreeper and 4 Siskin.

One of the Goldcrest was quite confiding but still too active to get a decent photo.

Alan's Pool - Unfortunately another dead Mute Swan (3rd or 4th this year, no obvious signs of cause), c15 Wigeon and 3+ Reed Bunting.

Friday, 11 December 2015

Wednesday 9th December 2015

Catching up with sightings from Wednesday with thanks to John Olley and Joe Hughes;

Castle Lake - 600 Teal, 300 Wigeon, 10 Shoveler, 3 Shelduck, 9 Redshank, 250 Lapwing, 30 Curlew and 40 Golden Plover.

Thursday, 3 December 2015

Thursday 3rd December 2015

This morning's sightings;

Castle Lake - 1 Shelduck, 7 Shoveler, c300 Teal, 5 Cormorant, 1 Grey Heron, 1 Sparrowhawk, c200 Golden Plover, 5 Snipe, 16 Redshank and 10 Meadow Pipit.

Stoneybeck Lake - 1 Mute Swan, 19 Gadwall and 100 Lapwing.

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Tuesday 1st December 2015

Sightings today with thanks to Joe Hughes;

Castle Lake - water levels steadily rising, 30 Golden Plover, 50 Curlew, 1 Snipe, 3 Redshank, 12 Long-tailed Tit's, 1 Grey Wagtail and 1 Great Black-backed Gull.

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Sunday 22nd November 2015

Sightings from this afternoon;

Stoneybeck Lake (90% frozen) - 2 Greylag Geese, 5 Canada Geese, 3 Gadwall, Mallard, Teal, 1f Tufted Duck, 1f Kestrel, 6 Moorhen, Coot, 25 Golden Plover, 50+ Lapwing, 12 Curlew, 1 Pied Wagtail & 1 Mistle Thrush.

Foumarts Lane - 2 Bullfinch.

Castle Lake (90% frozen) - 2 Mute Swan, 1 Shelduck, 180 Wigeon, 16 Gadwall, 50+ Mallard, 11 Shoveler, 205 Teal, 8 Grey Partridge, 1 Cormorant, 200 Golden Plover, 100+ Lapwing, 60 Curlew, 2 Redshank, 10+ Pied Wagtail, 8 Meadow Pipit, 4 Redwing & 20 Linnet.

Thursday, 19 November 2015

Thursday 19th November 2015

Sightings from today with thanks to John Olley;

Castle Lake - 1100 Golden Plover, 700 Lapwing, 1 Green Sandpiper, 1 Dunlin, 60 Curlew, 3 Redshank, 300 Teal, Corn Bunting singing and 20 Pied Wagtail.

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Tuesday 17th November 2015

Sightings from this morning's circular walk around Castle Lake;

Foumarts Lane - 5+ Redwing, 1 Coal Tit, 1 Treecreeper, 2 Tree Sparrow and 2 Greenfinch.

Island Farm - 10 Grey Partridge, small numbers of Tree Sparrow, Yellowhammer and Reed Bunting and 4 Corn Bunting with at least two singing.

Castle Lake - 2 Mute Swan, 1 Shelduck, 12 Shoveler, 200 Teal, 1 Tufted Duck (quite scarce at the moment), 7 Cormorant, 1 Kestrel, 2 Dunlin and 2 Redshank.

Alan's Pool - 1 Redshank and 1 Mistle Thrush.

Low Hardwick - 300 Golden Plover, 300 Lapwing, 7 Snipe, 1 Kingfisher, 1 Skylark over west, 1 Mistle Thrush, 15 Siskin and 10 Lesser Redpoll.

A1 Flashes/River Stell - 1 Mute Swan, 2 Little Grebe, 1 Grey Heron, 1 Little Egret and 5 Redshank.


The small boggy, marshy pond at the south end of Foumarts Lane has had a clear out, been enlarged and thanks to the recent rain a good fill.

Sunday, 15 November 2015

Sunday 15th November 2015

Some sightings from this afternoon;

Castle Lake - 1 Shelduck, 88 Wigeon, c100 Mallard, 5 Shoveler, 210 Teal, 147 Curlew, 2 Redshank and 20 Linnet.

A1 Flashes - 50 Lapwing and a Green Sandpiper.

Low Hardwick - 1 Sparrowhawk, 1 Kestrel, 1 Short-eared Owl active from mid-afternoon for 20-30 minutes and 2 Jay.

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Tuesday 10th November 2015

Some sightings from this morning;

Castle Lake - 1 Pink-footed Goose, 63 Greylag Geese, 92 Canada Geese, 7 Wigeon, 7 Gadwall, 10 Shoveler, 60 Teal, 3 female Goosander, 7 Cormorant, 1 Little Egret, 3 Curlew, 4 Redshank, 80+ Black-headed Gull, 50+ Common Gull and c200 Starling.

Friday, 6 November 2015

Friday 6th November 2015

Today's sightings;

Castle Lake - The daily mid-morning arrival of Geese today revealed 4 Pink-footed Geese, c300 Greylag Geese, c100 Canada Geese, 4 Bar-headed Geese and the presumed hybrid Barnacle Goose (pictured below).

Others included 2 Shelduck, c200 Wigeon, 9 Cormorant, 1 Kestrel, 200+ Golden Plover, 300+ Lapwing, 1 Dunlin, 1 Snipe, 11 Curlew, 3 Redshank, 5+ Skylark over south and at least 1 Corn Bunting heard.

River Stell - 2 Mute Swan, 2 Little Grebe, 2 Little Egret and a Grey Heron.

Near Alan's Pool the River Skerne has been dredged.

Foumarts Lane - 4 Mistle Thrush.

Blog post #400 and two day's away from it's fifth anniversary.

Saturday, 31 October 2015

Saturday 31st October 2015

Sightings from this morning;

Castle Lake - 9 European White-fronted Geese (6 adults and 3 juveniles) flew in from the west with Greylag Geese at 10:30 and then flew off south @ 11:15 but were seen back on the lake again later in the day.

Couple of rubbish pictures of the White-fronts.

Also on Castle Lake were 300 Greylag Geese, 142 Canada Geese, 4 Bar-headed Geese, 1 possible Barnacle Goose (see below), 2 Shelduck, 200 Wigeon, 3 Gadwall, 20 Shoveler, 200 Teal, 8 Cormorant, 40 Golden Plover, 300 Lapwing, 1 Ruff, 9 Snipe, 10 Curlew, 4 Redshank, 30+ Common Gull and 15+ Skylark over south.

The Goose to the left of the Bar-headed Goose may be either a Barnacle Goose or a hybrid between those two species, further observations necessary!
The other three Bar-headed Geese.

River Stell - 3 Little Grebe.
A1 Flashes (which now has water on it again) - 1 Little Egret, 1 Mute Swan.

Monday, 26 October 2015

Monday 26th October 2015

Sightings today with thanks to Joe Hughes.

Castle Lake - 300 Golden Plover, 5 Redshank, 7 Snipe, 1 Little Egret, 90 Curlew and 1 Ruff.

Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Wednesday 21st October 2015

Sightings from this morning;

Castle Lake - 25 Shoveler, 1 Little Grebe, c500 Golden Plover, 400 Lapwing, 1 Ruff, 3 Redshank and 1 Grey Wagtail.

Alan's Pool - 1 Green Sandpiper.

Fishburn Lake - 15 Teal, 1 Grey Heron and 1 Green Sandpiper.

Monday, 19 October 2015

Monday 19th October 2015

Sightings from this afternoon.

Castle Lake - 54 Pink-footed Geese, 15 Shoveler, 1st-winter drake Goldeneye, 2 Sparrowhawk, 100 Golden Plover, 500 Lapwing, 1 Ruff, 2 Snipe, 70 Curlew, 2 Redshank and 200 Starling.

Low Hardwick - 1 Grey Heron, 1 Sparrowhawk, 75 Curlew, 7 Skylark and 1 Jay.

Alan's Pool - 1 Snipe, 1 Green Sandpiper and a Kingfisher.

Friday, 16 October 2015

Friday 16th October 2015

Sightings from today with thanks to Joe Hughes.

Castle Lake - 55 Pink-footed Geese, 1 Ruff, 1 Redshank, 20 Curlew and 1 Jay.

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Tuesday 13th October 2015

Sightings from this morning;

Castle Lake - 49 Pink-footed Geese flew in from the west @10:15, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 17 Cormorant, 1 Little Egret, 1 Ringed Plover, 400 Golden Plover, 400 Lapwing, 2 Snipe, 62 Curlew, 2 Redshank and 1 Green Sandpiper.
Just some of the Golden Plover flock.

For the second day running the Pink-footed Geese flew in mid-morning landed on the grass and just chilled.

Low Hardwick - 1 Fieldfare, 1 late male Blackcap, 2 Goldcrest and 2 Jay.

Fishburn Lake - 12 Teal and 2 Green Sandpiper (pictured below).

Monday, 12 October 2015

Monday 12th October 2015

Sightings from this morning;

Castle Lake - 49 Pink-footed Geese flew in from the west @10:45 in groups of 44 & 5, 124 Wigeon, 16 Shoveler, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 16 Cormorant, 1 Ringed Plover, 150 Golden Plover over, 1 Ruff, 7 Snipe and 11 Redwing.
44 Pink-footed Geese turning into wind before landing on the grass next to Castle Lake this morning, followed shortly after by a further 5 which landed at the southern end of the lake.

Foumarts Lane - 3 Mistle Thrush and a Roe Deer.

Roe Deer, last seen heading towards the tunnel under the A1M.

Monday, 5 October 2015

Monday 5th October 2015

Today's sightings;

Foumarts Lane - 6 Mistle Thrush and 18 Redwing over west.

Castle Lake - 84 Wigeon, 13 Shoveler, 34 Teal, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 1 Sparrowhawk, 1 Kestrel, 42 Golden Plover, 300 Lapwing, 2 Ruff, 1 Snipe, 2 Redshank, 2 Green Sandpiper, 250 Black-headed Gull and 5 Stock Dove.

River Stell - 2 Mute Swan and 2 Little Grebe.

Footpath to Fishburn Lake - 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker and 1 Goldcrest.

Fishburn Lake - 2 Mute Swan, 25 Teal, 1 Green Sandpiper, 9+ Long-tailed Tit, 2 Willow Tit and 1 Redwing over south-west.

Saturday, 3 October 2015

Saturday 3rd October 2015

Sightings from this afternoon's visit;

Castle Lake - 19 Pink-footed Geese (departed to the west just after 14:30), 84 Wigeon, 13 Shoveler, 1 Little Egret, 1 Kestrel, 10 Golden Plover, 200+ Lapwing, 3 Ruff, 1 Dunlin, 1 Snipe, 50 Curlew and 2 Green Sandpiper.

Thursday, 1 October 2015

Thursday 1st October 2015

Sightings today with thanks to Joe Hughes.

Castle Lake - 100 Golden Plover, 1 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Green Sandpiper, 4 Buzzard, 3 Ruff and 60 Curlew.

Monday, 28 September 2015

Monday 28th September 2015

Sightings from this morning;

Castle Lake - (thick fog until late morning), 1 Great Crested Grebe, 2 Grey Heron, 3 Ruff, 1 Snipe, 1 Redshank and 1 Green Sandpiper.

River Stell - 2 Little Grebe.

Footpath to Alan's Pool - 1 Chiffchaff, 2 Willow Tit, 2 Bullfinch and 1 Lesser Redpoll over west.

Alan's Pool - 1 Green Sandpiper.

Friday, 25 September 2015

Friday 25th September 2015

Sightings today with thanks to Joe Hughes;

Castle Lake - 3 Little Egret, 3 Ruff, 1 Redshank and 1 Buzzard.

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Wednesday 23rd September 2015

Today's sightings;

Castle Lake - 1 Great Crested Grebe, 3 Little Egret, 2 Grey Heron, 1 Peregrine, 2 Ruff, 2 Dunlin, 60 Curlew, 1 Redshank, 2 Green Sandpiper, 1 Swallow, 4 House Martin and 1 Grey Wagtail.

River Stell- 2 Little Grebe, 1 Kingfisher.

Footpath to Fishburn Lake - 1 Treecreeper and 1 Willow Tit.

Alan's Pool - 1 Ruff, 1 Curlew and 1 Green Sandpiper.

Fishburn Lake - 55 Teal, 1 Grey Heron, 1 Kingfisher, 2 Blackcap and 2 Chiffchaff with one singing.

Wildlife Garden - 1 Chiffchaff.

Foumarts Lane - 3 Mistle Thrush overflew west.

Distant picture of this mornings Peregrine.

Monday, 21 September 2015

Monday 21st September 2015

Sightings from this morning's visit;

Castle Lake - 39 Wigeon, 11 Grey Partridge (groups of 9 and 2), 1 Great Crested Grebe, 2 Little Egret, 1 juvenile Sparrowhawk, 1 Redshank, 1 Green Sandpiper, 1 adult Mediterranean Gull (my first here this year), c300 Black-headed Gull, c130 Herring Gull, 2 Swallow, 1 Yellow Wagtail and 20 Linnet.

Adult Mediterrranean Gull (fifth from the left)
Juvenile Sparrowhawk
Bishop Middleham's entry in this years 'strangest looking Goose' competition.

Saturday, 19 September 2015

Saturday 19th September 2015

Sightings from this afternoon;

Castle Lake - 5 Pink-footed Geese in the south-east corner (four pictured below), 35 Wigeon, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 17 Cormorant, 2 Little Egret, 2 Grey Heron, 2 Common Buzzard, 2 Golden Plover, c300 Lapwing, 3 Ruff, 1 Dunlin, 120 Curlew, 3 Green Sandpiper, 200 Black-headed Gull and 2 Swallow.

Monday, 14 September 2015

Monday 14th September 2015

Sightings from this morning;

Castle Lake - 500 Greylag Geese, 320 Canada Geese (my highest ever total beating the previous best of 250), 29 Wigeon, 11 Shoveler, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 17 Cormorant, 2 Ringed Plover, 5 Ruff, 2 Dunlin, 3 Green Sandpiper, 2 Common Sandpiper (my latest ever record), 10 House Martin, 1 Grey Wagtail and 20 Linnet.

River Stell - 1 Little Egret


Everything was peaceful 'til this lot dropped in.

Tuesday, 8 September 2015

Tuesday 8th September 2015

Sightings from this morning;

Castle Lake - 3 Wigeon, 3 Pochard, 2 adult Grey Partridge with 5 juveniles being chased by a Sparrowhawk, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 1 Golden Plover, 9 Ruff (8 flew off towards Fishburn Lake but returned later), 5 Dunlin, 1 Snipe, 1 Curlew, 2 Redshank, 6 Green Sandpiper, 1 Common Sandpiper, 1 adult and 1 juvenile Common Tern (flew off by 08:35), 40+ Swallow, 5 House Martin, 1 Yellow Wagtail and 30 Tree Sparrow.

Distant picture of this morning Tern's.

Saturday, 5 September 2015

Saturday 5th September 2015

Sightings from this afternoon.

Castle Lake - 3 Wigeon, 3 Shoveler, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 15 Cormorant, 1 juvenile Little Ringed Plover, 9 Ruff (4 later flew to Fishburn Lake), 4 Dunlin, 92 Curlew, 1 Redshank, 1 Green Sandpiper, 2 Common Sandpiper, 84+ Black-headed Gull, 8 Common Gull and c100 Goldfinch.

Alan's Pool - 8 Moorhen and a Kingfisher.

Fishburn Lake - c20 Teal, 1 Common Buzzard, 1 Grey Heron, 4 Ruff and a Green Sandpiper.
3 of the 4 Ruff on Fishburn Lake this afternoon.

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Sunday, 30 August 2015

Sunday 30th August 2015

Sightings for today;

Castle Lake - 1 Wigeon, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 8 Cormorant, 2 Common Buzzard, 1 Kestrel, 1 Little Ringed Plover, 2 Ringed Plover, 14 Ruff, 100 Curlew, 5 Green Sandpiper and 2 Common Sandpiper.
(Obviously there's been a bit of a clear out of some waders, yesterday a whopping 51 Ruff were reported here).

River Stell - 1 Little Egret and 1 Kingfisher.

Alan's Pool - 2 Kingfisher, 3 Little Ringed Plover, 1 Ruff, 9 Moorhen and 2 Common Buzzard.

Fishburn Lake - Water levels are well down on normal, producing some excellent habitat for wader's and 22 Ruff and 6 Dunlin were taking advantage this morning (presumably refugees from Castle Lake).

Fishburn Lake - definitely worth the effort if your looking for waders.

Monday, 24 August 2015

Monday 24th August 2015

Today's sightings following another circular walk around Castle Lake.

Castle Lake - Waders starting to dominate, not surprising given the time of year and the current water levels providing excellent habitat, a very good count of twelve different species on view this morning; 3 Little Ringed Plover, 7 Ringed Plover (mix of adults and juveniles), 20 Golden Plover (not often seen here in August), c300 Lapwing, 28 Ruff, 6 Dunlin, 3 Snipe, 1 Black-tailed Godwit, 6 Curlew, 3 Green Sandpiper, 1 Wood Sandpiper (below and to the right of the hide) and 1 Common Sandpiper. (Some of the above were favouring the small pond in the south-west corner of Castle Lake, but are easily flushed by passing walkers).
Others on offer included 50+ Teal, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 1 Common Buzzard, 175 Black-headed Gull and 2 Yellow Wagtail.

Alan's Pool continues to pull in waders despite its close proximity to a public right of way, 9 Ruff and 3 Black-tailed Godwit were present mid-morning.
Juvenile Ruff on Alan's Pool this morning, one of the most approachable and least spooked species of wader.
Assuming the nine birds at Alan's Pool were not part of the group seen on Castle Lake earlier then at least 37 different Ruff were around, definitely a new record count for Bishop Middleham.
Poor record picture of two of the Black-wits on Alan's Pool.

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Monday, 17 August 2015

Monday 17th August 2015

Today's sightings;

Castle Lake - Highlight this morning was a juvenile type Marsh Harrier which appeared over the southern end of the lake just after 11:10 before drifting towards Island Farm then flew further north and was lost to view.
Others on view included a superb 24 Ruff (guessing this is a new site record, a very mobile flock, took me about 24 attempts to count them!), 5 Dunlin, 3 Green Sandpiper, 2 Common Sandpiper, 50 Curlew, 4 Little Ringed Plover plus the single chick, 28 Teal, 6 Cormorant, 1 Grey Heron, 2 Little Egret, 1 Sparrowhawk chasing Goldfinch over Island Farm early on, 2 Little Grebe, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 6 Cormorant, 1 Yellow Wagtail and 1 singing Corn Bunting.

Alan's Pool - 9 Moorhen and a Grey Heron.

The fields to the west of the hide are starting to get ploughed and this had brought in a few more gull's this morning but only 4 Lesser Black-backed Gull's were of interest along with a Grey Heron.

Saturday, 15 August 2015

Saturday 15th August 2015

Sightings for today with thanks to John Olley and Joe Hughes.

Castle Lake and surrounds; 1 Little Egret, 4 Little Ringed Plover, 5 Ruff, 3 Green Sandpiper, 2 Common Sandpiper, 5 Dunlin, 28 Curlew, 1000 Lapwing, 2 Golden Plover, 1 Kingfisher, 600 Greylag Geese, 50 Teal, 1 Shoveler, 1 Peregrine, 1 Buzzard, 10 Reed Bunting, 4 Corn Bunting and 50 Swift.

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Wednesday 12th August 2015

Sightings from this mornings walk around Castle Lake;

Castle Lake - Wader passage has picked up with greater variety and bigger numbers, todays totals were 3 Little Ringed Plover (one still shepherding its small offspring), 2 adult Ringed Plover, c300 Lapwing, 6 Ruff (4 of which made a sojourn over at Alan's Pool), 1 juvenile Dunlin, 3 Black-tailed Godwit, 19 Curlew, 6 Green Sandpiper and 2 Common Sandpiper. Others on offer included 3 Shoveler, 7+ Teal, 1 juvenile Little Grebe, 1 adult Great Crested Grebe, 1 Cormorant, 1 Grey Heron, 1 Kingfisher in the south-west corner from/to the River Stell, at least 2 Yellow Wagtail and 1 Corn Bunting singing from telegraph wires near the north-east corner.

Alan's Pool - 2 Teal, 1 Grey Heron, the aforementioned 4 Ruff and best of all a Water Rail provided excellent views as it fed out in the bright warm sunshine, next to some Moorhen's.
(My first ever summer sighting of a Water Rail at BM. Whilst watching the Rail I became aware of a rustling noise coming from the long grass just off to my left, this revealed itself to be a Fox carrying a rabbit and just like the Water Rail seemed blissfully unaware of my presence :)

Thursday, 6 August 2015

Thursday 6th August 2015

Sightings for today;

Castle Lake - highlight this morning was a Hobby chasing Swift's over the lake for five minutes before heading off to the south. Others on view were c500 Greylag Geese, 2 Shoveler, 12 Teal, 1 juvenile Little Grebe, 1 adult Great Crested Grebe, 1 Cormorant, 1 Little Egret, 1 Grey Heron, 1 Little Ringed Plover now with only one chick, 1 juvenile Ruff, 40 Curlew, 3 Green Sandpiper, 3 Common Sandpiper, 30+ Swift and a still singing Corn Bunting.

River Stell - 1 adult Mute Swan with 3 cygnets.

Alan's Pool - 5 Little Ringed Plover (2adult3juvenile), 1 Snipe.

Foumarts Lane - 1 Sparrowhawk.

Some pictures from today.

 

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Tuesday 4th August 2015

Sightings from this morning;

Castle Lake - c1000 (!) Greylag Geese, 3 Shoveler, 5 Teal, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 1 Cormorant, 1 Oystercatcher, 1 Little Ringed Plover brooding two very young chicks, 2 Curlew, 2 Common Sandpiper, 30 Black-headed Gull, 4 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 1 Common Gull and 10+ Swift.

Alan's Pool - 3 (2 juvenile) Little Ringed Plover, 1 juvenile Ruff and 1 Snipe.

Low Hardwick - 6 Grey Heron and 400 Lapwing.

River Stell - 35 Gadwall (including juveniles).

 
   
Water levels continue to diminish, this is what's left of the pond in the south-west corner of Castle Lake.                                                                                              
                 

Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Wednesday 29th July 2015

Sightings today with thanks to John Olley.

Castle Lake - 1 Wood Sandpiper, 3 Common Sandpiper, 1 Green Sandpiper, 1000 Lapwing, 7 Dunlin, 1 Little Ringed Plover, 1 Peregrine, 200 Swift, 150 Black-headed Gull and 2 adult Common Gull.

Monday, 27 July 2015

Monday 27th July 2015

Sightings for today included the following;

Castle Lake - 78 Canada Geese, 3juv Shelduck, 3 Shoveler, 4 Teal, 2 Grey Partridge, 1adult1juvenile Little Grebe, 2 Cormorant, Sparrowhawk over carrying prey, 4 Oystercatcher, 1adult1juvenile Little Ringed Plover, 280 Lapwing, 4 Dunlin, 4 Snipe, 1 Curlew, 1juvenile Redshank, 1 Green Sandpiper, 5 Common Sandpiper, 15 Black-headed Gull, 3adult1juvenile Lesser Black-backed Gull, 1 Common Gull, 2 Common Tern, 40+ Pied Wagtail, 4 Yellow Wagtail and a (still) singing Corn Bunting.

Foumarts Lane - 1 Kestrel and a female Great Spotted Woodpecker.

Monday, 20 July 2015

Monday 20th July 2015

Some observations following a circular walk around Castle Lake this morning;

Castle Lake - 3 Mute Swan, 1adult3juvenile Shelduck, Gadwall with 3 ducklings, 1 Teal, 4adult1juvenile Little Grebe, 1 Grey Heron, 2 Oystercatcher, 4+ Little Ringed Plover, 150 Lapwing and 1 chick!, 1 Snipe, 2 Curlew, 1 Redshank, 1 Green Sandpiper, 2 Common Sandpiper, 26 Black-headed Gull, 2 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 3 Common Gull, 2 Common Tern, 1 Yellow Wagtail and a singing Corn Bunting.

River Stell -  1 pair of Mute Swan with 3 cygnets, Gadwall broods of 4, 4, 5 and 9.

Along the embankment towards Alan's Pool - 1 Kingfisher, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker, Whitethroat, Blackcap and Willow Tit.

Alan's Pool - (water levels diminishing, producing some good wader habitat) 1 Shelduck, Gadwall broods of 11 and 2, 1 Shoveler, 1 Grey Heron, 1 Buzzard over, Coot with juveniles, 1 Little Ringed Plover and another singing Corn Bunting.

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Tuesday 14th July 2015

Today's sightings with thanks to John Olley and Alan Jones.

Castle Lake - 2 Green Sandpiper, 3 Redshank, 10 Oystercatcher, 1 Curlew, 1 Whimbrel, 2 Little Ringed Plover, 800 Lapwing, Grey Partridge pair with 4+ newly hatched chicks, first confirmed breeding of Reed Warbler pair feeding fledged juveniles, 3 Common Tern, 200 Sand Martin, 60 Coot, 4 juvenile Yellow Wagtail and 2 Corn Bunting.

Monday, 13 July 2015

Monday 13th July 2015

Sightings from this morning.

Castle Lake - 1pr Shelduck with 3 juveniles, 4 Little Grebe, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 1 Sparrowhawk flew over carrying prey, 3 Oystercatcher, 6 Little Ringed Plover, Lapwing with 1 chick, 2 Snipe, 4 Redshank, 3 Green Sandpiper, 2 Common Sandpiper, 17 Black-headed Gull (2 juveniles), 2 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 1 Common Tern, 3 Yellow Wagtail and 2 singing Corn Bunting.

Monday, 6 July 2015

Monday 6th July 2015

Sightings from this morning;

Castle Lake - Shelduck pair with 3 juveniles, female Gadwall with 3 ducklings, 6 Teal, 5 Pochard, 3 female type Goosander, 2 Little Grebe, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 1 Kestrel, c6 Little Ringed Plover, 2 Ringed Plover, 1 Snipe, 1sp Black-tailed Godwit, 4 Green Sandpiper, 2 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 2 Common Tern, 2 Yellow Wagtail and 1 Corn Bunting.

Friday, 3 July 2015

Friday 3rd July 2015

Sightings today with thanks to John Olley;

Castle Lake - 1 Wood Sandpiper, 1 Green Sandpiper, 4 Little Ringed Plover, 10 Oystercatcher, 300 Lapwing, female Gadwall with 6 ducklings and 3 ducklings, Shelduck adults with 3 ducklings and a pair of Common Tern.

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Tuesday 30th June 2015

Thanks to John Olley for todays sightings.

Castle Lake - A Hobby drifted high over Bishop Middleham village the dropped and attacked hirundines over lake; 5 Little Ringed Plover, 1 Ringed Plover, 8 Oystercatcher, 1 Common Tern, 2 Great Crested Grebe, 10 Teal, 12 Tree Sparrow, 2 Corn Bunting and 200 Sand Martin.

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Tuesday 23rd June 2015

Sightings from this morning.

Castle Lake - 2 Mute Swan, Canada Geese including numerous gosling, Shelduck pair with 3 ducklings, 3 drake Teal, 7 Pochard, 2 Little Grebe, 2 Great Crested Grebe, 70 Coot, 10 Oystercatcher, 7 Little Ringed Plover, 1 Ringed Plover, 50 Lapwing, 4 Black-headed Gull including the first sighting of a juvenile this year, 1 Common Tern which had a metal ring on its right leg, Pied Wagtail including juveniles, 2 Yellow Wagtail, Great Tit juveniles, Starling juveniles, Tree Sparrow juveniles and 2 singing Corn Bunting.

A1 Flashes (dry) - 1 Grey Heron.

Monday, 15 June 2015

Monday 15th June 2015

Some sightings from this morning;

Castle Lake - 18 adult & 3 juvenile Shelduck, 2 Wigeon, 2 Teal, 9 Pochard, 2 Grey Partridge, 1 Grey Heron, 4 Little Ringed Plover, 3 Redshank, 1 Common Sandpiper, 2 Black-headed Gull, 2 Yellow Wagtail and 2 Corn Bunting.

River Stell - Mute Swan pair with 4 cygnets.

Alan's Pool - 2 Buzzard overhead.

Low Hardwick - 2pr Tufted Duck, 1 Grey Heron, 1 Kestrel, 5 singing Sedge Warbler and some recently fledged Whitethroat.

Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Tuesday 2nd June 2015

Some sightings from this morning.

Castle Lake - 70+ Canada Geese, 4 Shoveler, 2 Grey Partridge, 2 Little Grebe, 3 Great Crested Grebe, 4 Little Ringed Plover, 7 Ringed Plover, 3 Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Redshank, 2 Black-headed Gull, 1 Common Tern and 1 Yellow Wagtail.

Stoneybeck Lake - 16 Shelduck, 1 Redshank, 1 Oystercatcher and Lapwing with young.

Sunday, 31 May 2015

Sunday 31st May 2015

Thanks to Joe Hughes for today's sightings.

Castle Lake - 5 Black-tailed Godwit, 6 Ringed Plover, 1 Dunlin, 4 Little Ringed Plover, 2 Common Tern and 1 Teal.

Friday, 29 May 2015

Friday 29th May 2015

Sightings for today.

Castle Lake - 6 Canada Geese broods with c25 gosling, 21 Shelduck, 4 Shoveler, drake Teal, 2 Little Grebe, 2 Great Crested Grebe, 10 adult 3 juvenile Oystercatcher, 2 Little Ringed Plover, 3 Ringed Plover, 2 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Redshank, 2 Black-headed Gull, 2 Herring Gull, 5 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 2 Common Tern, 4 Stock Dove, 1 Yellow Wagtail and 1 Corn Bunting.

Monday, 18 May 2015

Monday 18th May 2015

Birds seen today included the following;

Castle Lake - 2 Grey Partridge, 1 Cormorant, 1 Kestrel, 4 Little Ringed Plover, 3 Ringed Plover, 4 Dunlin, 3 Redshank, 1 Common Sandpiper, 6 Black-headed Gull, 1 Common Gull, 3 Yellow Wagtail, 1 Mistle Thrush and 1 Corn Bunting.

Low Hardwick - 1 Little Grebe (on the moto-x pool, a site first), 1 Buzzard carrying prey, 1 Kestrel, c6 Sedge Warbler, 5 Whitethroat, 1 Willow Tit and 5+ Reed Bunting.

Fishburn Lake - Canada Geese pair with 3 gosling, 5 Shelduck, 4 Gadwall and 2 Shoveler.

Alan's Pool - 2 Little Grebe and 1 Sedge Warbler.

Sunday, 17 May 2015

Sunday 17th May 2015

Some sightings for today.

Castle Lake - 3 Shoveler, 1 Cormorant, Oystercatcher pair with 3 chicks, 2+ Little Ringed Plover, 2+ Ringed Plover, 1 Dunlin, 2 Redshank, 1 Common Sandpiper, 2 Black-headed Gull, 2 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 2 Common Tern, 1 Corn Bunting.

Stoneybeck Lake - 1 Redshank.

Saturday, 16 May 2015

Saturday 16th May 2015

Sightings today with thanks to Joe Hughes.

Castle Lake - 8 Dunlin, 7 Ringed Plover, 4 Little Ringed Plover, 3 Yellow Wagtail and 1 Curlew.

Bishop Middleham - 1 Osprey over the village heading north.

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Tuesday 12th May 2015

Sightings for today.

Castle Lake - Canada Geese pairs with 4 and 6 gosling, 22 Shelduck, 1 Pochard, 3 Great Crested Grebe, 1 Cormorant, 1 Little Egret, 4 Little Ringed Plover, 6 Ringed Plover, 18 Dunlin, 2 Redshank, 2 Common Sandpiper, 1 Black-headed Gull, 4 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 1 Common Gull, 30+ Swift, 20 House Martin, 1 Yellow Wagtail and 2 Wheatear.

Stoneybeck Lake - 2 Lapwing broods of 4 and 2, 1 Redshank and 1 Common Sandpiper.

Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Wednesday 6th May 2015

Thanks to Joe Hughes for today's sightings;

Castle Lake - 12 Ringed Plover, 8 Dunlin, 5 Little Ringed Plover, 1 Common Sandpiper, 3 Curlew, 2 Redshank, 2 Great Black-backed Gull, 3 Lapwing chicks, 30+ Swift and 1 Black-tailed Godwit.

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Tuesday 5th May 2015

Today's sightings.

Castle Lake - a single calling Whimbrel flew over the hide heading west at 13:00, 20+ Dunlin (including a flock of 18), 15+ Ringed Plover (including a flock of 11), 3 Little Ringed Plover, Lapwing with 3 chicks, 3 Black-tailed Godwit, 5 Curlew, 4 Redshank, 1 Common Sandpiper, Canada Geese with 4 gosling, 3 Shoveler, 3 Teal, 5 Pochard, 2 Grey Partridge, 4 Little Grebe, 4 Great Crested Grebe, 1 Little Egret,  9 Black-headed Gull, 3 Herring Gull, 2 Common Gull, c10 Swift moving west, 3 House Martin, 4+ Yellow Wagtail, 4 Wheatear, 2 Linnet and 2 Corn Bunting.

Some of the many Dunlin and Ringed Plover seen today.

Two of the three Black-tailed Godwit still present.

Another Yellow Wagtail picture, no sign yet of any Channel Wagtail.

Monday, 4 May 2015

Monday 4th May 2015

Some sightings for Bank Holiday Monday.

Castle Lake - Canada Geese with 4 gosling, 26 adult Shelduck, 4+ Little Ringed Plover, 6 Ringed Plover, Lapwing with 3 chicks, 2 Dunlin, 3 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Curlew, 4 Redshank, 1 Wood Sandpiper, 2 Common Sandpiper, 4+ Yellow Wagtail and 1 Corn Bunting.

Low Hardwick - 1 Grey Heron, Canada Geese with 5 gosling, 1 Kestrel and 3 singing Sedge Warbler.

Alan's Pool - 2 Little Grebe and unfortunately another dead Swan, that's three this year :(

Stoneybeck Lake - 5 Shelduck, 1 Buzzard, 2 Little Ringed Plover, 2-3 broods of Lapwing chicks, 1 Curlew and 2 Redshank.

Sunday 3rd May 2015

Sightings for Sunday with thanks to Joe Hughes and John Olley.

Castle Lake - 2 Dunlin, 1 Turnstone, 1 Ruff, 4 Redshank, 6 Little Ringed Plover, 2 Ringed Plover, 3 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Common Sandpiper, 10 Oystercatcher, 1 Curlew, 12 Lapwing, 1 Little Egret, 4 Wheatear, 6 Yellow Wagtail, 4 White Wagtail, 4 Corn Bunting, 6 Teal, 2 Wigeon, 4 Great Crested Grebe, 6 Shoveler, 10 Shelduck, 250 Sand Martin and 1 Swift.

Island Farm - 5 Corn Bunting, 3 Wheatear, 2 Yellow Wagtail.

Saturday, 2 May 2015

Saturday 2nd May 2015

Today's sightings.

Castle Lake - 2 Wigeon, 3 Shoveler, 6 Teal, 4 Pochard, 2 Little Grebe, 3 Great Crested Grebe, 1 Kestrel, 4 Little Ringed Plover, 2 Ringed Plover, 1 Ruff, 1 Dunlin, 3 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Curlew, 6 Redshank, 1 Common Sandpiper, 6 Black-headed Gull, 1 Little Owl, 1 White Wagtail, 4+ Yellow Wagtail, 2 Wheatear and 1 Corn Bunting.

Low Hardwick - Canada Geese pair with 5 gosling, 1 Grey Heron, 2 Buzzard, 1 Kestrel, 3 Stock Dove, 16 Swallow, 2 singing Sedge Warbler, 1 reeling, Grasshopper Warbler, 3 Whitethroat, 4 Linnet and 2+ Reed Bunting.

Some photo's from today;
Yellow Wagtail

Swallow

Canada Geese pair with five gosling

Sedge Warbler

Dunlin and Ringed Plover

Thursday, 30 April 2015

Thursday 30th April 2015

Thanks to Joe Hughes for today's sightings.

Castle Lake - 5 Black-tailed Godwit, 5 Dunlin, 6 Ringed Plover, 1 Ruff, 4 Little Ringed Plover, 11 Yellow Wagtail, 1 Common Sandpiper, 10 Redshank and 2 White Wagtail.

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Tuesday 28th April 2015

Sightings and some photo's from today.

Castle Lake - 11 Shelduck, 4 Shoveler, 2 Pochard, 8 Teal, 2 Grey Partridge, 1 Cormorant, 8 Little Ringed Plover, 1 Ruff, 1 Dunlin, 3 Black-tailed Godwit (2sp), 10 Redshank with a pair mating, 3 Common Sandpiper, 5 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 1 White Wagtail, 2 Yellow Wagtail, 1 Wheatear and 1 Corn Bunting.

A1 Flashes - 1 Curlew and 1 Wheatear.

Low Hardwick - 2 Grey Partridge, 1 Grey Heron, 1 male Sparrowhawk and a singing Whitethroat.

Stoneybeck Lake - 10 Shelduck, 3 Shoveler, 1 Little Grebe, 1 Little Ringed Plover, Lapwing with 4 chicks, 2sp Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Curlew, 1 Redshank, 1 Common Sandpiper, 9 Pied Wagtail, 1 White Wagtail and 1 Yellow Wagtail.

The three Black-tailed Godwit at Castle Lake.

Ruff.

Common Sandpiper.

Saturday, 25 April 2015

Saturday 25th April 2015

Sightings for today.

Castle Lake - 6 Teal, 2 Grey Partridge, 3 Little Ringed Plover, 3 Ruff, 1sp Dunlin, 10 Redshank, 2 Yellow Wagtail, 3 Wheatear and 1 Corn Bunting.


A1 Flashes - 1 Green Sandpiper.

A walk to Fishburn Lake noted the following - 1 Fieldfare (quite late now), 1 Sedge Warbler, 1 Whitethroat, 11 Blackcap, 1 Garden Warbler, 5 Chiffchaff, 20 Willow Warbler, 1 Willow Tit and 3 Treecreeper.

Low Hardwick - 1 Grey Heron and 2 Kestrel.

Stoneybeck Lake - 2 Shoveler, 2sp Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Curlew, 1 Redshank and 2 Lesser Black-backed Gull.