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Post Info TOPIC: Stalybridge country park- Brushes


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RE: Stalybridge country park- Brushes


Wednesday 12th December 2018, 6.40 - 7.30am.

Walkerwood area.

1 Woodcock over the feeders, from the direction of the country park, into Cock Wood, at 7.22am
Tawny Owls hooting and calling from Cock Wood, the Country Park, and the trees lining the northern side of Walkerwood Reservoir. Difficult to put a number on them, as they are mobile. I would estimate one male in the Country Park, and up to four around Walkerwood, two males with different songs, and two females heard more or less simultaneously.
A lot of Redwing overhead most mornings, well before it is light.

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Tuesday 4th December 2018, 6.40 - 7.30am.

Walkerwood Area.

1 Woodcock over the southern end of Walkerwood Dam, from the direction of the country park, towards Cock Wood, at 7.15.
3 Tawny Owls. Two birds hooting - in the country park, and at Cock Wood; the third calling from the trees on the northern side of the reservoir.
26 Canada Geese on the reservoir.

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Tuesday 27th November 2018, 6.40 - 7.30am.

Along Walkerwood Reservoir.

2 Woodcock, at 7.06 and 7.10am. Both flew from the direction of Millbrook, one over the reservoir to Cock Wood, the second into the trees on the north side of Walkerwood Reservoir.
1 Tawny Owl hooting from Cock Wood

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Saturday 24th November 2018, 6.30 - 9.30am.

From Walkerwood Dam, up Brushes Valley, and to the far end of Higher Swineshaw Reservoir.

3 Woodcock. Birds have been returning to roost at 7.00am this week, so I timed this morning to be in Brushes SBI at this hour, because on a working day, I havent enough time to get back from this far up the valley. I was rewarded with two birds flying from Walkerwood direction at 7.00, into the woods, and another at 7.05, from Lower Swineshaw, into Brushes quarry. Since the autumn influx, I have recorded them all along the valley, from the country park, as far as Lower Swineshaw.

I should have called it a day there and then. The rest of the morning was deathly, with an icy, buffeting wind from Lower Swineshaw upwards cancelling the planned return across Harridge Moor.

Higher Swineshaw.

1 Grey Wagtail
10 Red Grouse (it is a Grouse moor!)
4 Meadow Pipits
1 Blackbird

Back at Walkerwood in daylight.

A flock of c150 Fieldfare and c30 Redwing moving around, at one point chasing a pair of Kestrels, accompanied by several noisy Mistle Thrush
1 Song Thrush singing
Several Nuthatch
1 Willow Tit on the feeders, calling loudly this week

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Wednesday 21st November 2018, 6.40 - 7.30am.

From Walkerwood Dam, as far as Brushes Cottages.

2 Woodcock, both from the direction of Cote Farm, flew along the northern side of Walkerwood Reservoir, then over towards Cock Wood, within a minute of each other, at 7.02.
12+ Blackbirds
Several Robins flying around in the dark

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Monday 19th November 2018, 6.30 - 7.30am.

Walkerwood area.

2 Woodcock; one down the side of the reservoir, into the country park, at 7.01, the second over Harridge from the direction of Millbrook, across the reservoir, towards Cock Wood, two minutes later.
1 Buzzard over Harridge
1 Kestrel in its usual roost spot.

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Saturday 17th November 2018, 6.30 - 10.30am.

From Walkerwood Reservoir, up Brushes Valley, to Lees Hill, then back across Harridge Moor.

The first sighting was before first light, when a Buzzard soared over the woods, then across the valley, to Wild Bank
1 Woodcock, at 6.55am, into the woods on Harridge, from Walkerwood direction.
1 Jack Snipe was flushed from the edge of Boar Flat, opposite Lees Hill
1 Mandarin drake swimming with 3 Mallard, on Lower Swineshaw Reservoir
1 Kestrel at Higher Swineshaw, as well as 2 Ravens
c 25 Red Grouse, on Swineshaw and Harridge Moors
A similar number of Meadow Pipits, in the same areas
One pair of Stonechat, high up on Harridge Moor, a regular breeding site. Presumably staying the winter.
A few Redwing were in the hawthorn bushes near Walkerwood Dam, as well as a Buzzard, which had half a dozen Magpies for company.

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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David Walsh wrote:


The weeks most unusual sighting was of a Red-legged Partridge perched on the roof of Brushes Cottages at 7.00am on Monday!


There seem to have been quite a few Red-legged Partidges released in the Tame Valley this year. Maybe they've eaten all the apostrophes?



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Steve "Make your birdwatching count!"


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David Walsh wrote:

There are more apostrophes missing in the follow up!!

Not sure whether it is my iPad, or the Activeboard?

I will move onno





Dave, sounds like a job for Beachcomber's Apostropher Royal.

https://www.express.co.uk/comment/beachcomber/451248/96-years-old-and-STILL-counting-apostrophes

Cheers John

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There are more apostrophes missing in the follow up!!

Not sure whether it is my iPad, or the Activeboard?

I will move onno

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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I realise that, due to my ipads Predictive text, there is an apostrophe missing between the k and s in the word weeks.

I have edited the post twice, but it still reverts to the original, grammatically incorrect version.

Which is really irritating.

So my apologies to all concerned cry

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Thursday 8th November 2018, 4.30 - 5.30pm.

Brushes Valley, as far as Lower Swineshaw.

1 Woodcock out of the woods on Harridge, over Lower Swineshaw scout hut, at 4.55
1 Tawny Owl calling from the trees around the scout hut
1 Kestrel on a telephone wire near Brushes Cottages

Stalybridge Country Park, 10.00am - 11.45am.

Ash keys seem to be the favoured food source this week.

10 Redwing
5 Fieldfare over
10+ Blackbirds
6 Bullfinch
11 Goldfinch
Several Lesser Redpoll heard
10+ Chaffinch
1 Greenfinch
4 Coal Tits
Several Long-tailed Tits
2 Nuthatch
3 Jays
1 Great Spotted Woodpecker
1 juvenile Kestrel at Walkerwood Dam
1 Grey Wagtail in Walkerwood overflow

Other sightings from this weeks dawn shifts.

A lot of Fieldfare and Redwing movement at first light, with flocks of up to 150 Fieldfare, and 30 Redwing overhead. There seems to be a static population of around 100 Fieldfare and 30 Redwing feeding in the general area, particularly on the Harridge side.
A Peregrine putting in a couple of appearances over Harridge
Up to 3 Kestrel over Harridge
Several Nuthatch around Brushes Valley
30+ Chaffinch down the valley shortly after dawn each morning
12 Lesser Redpoll down the valley on Monday morning
A couple of Siskin heard only around Brushes Cottages
The weeks most unusual sighting was of a Red-legged Partridge perched on the roof of Brushes Cottages at 7.00am on Monday!


--

-- Edited by David Walsh on Thursday 8th of November 2018 09:29:12 PM


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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Saturday 3rd November 2018, 7.30 - 9.30am.

Walkerwood area, along as far as Cote Farm.

1 Peregrine over Harridge
2 Kestrels over Harridge
A pair of tumbling Ravens
c 30 Redwing feeding on berries between Walkerwood Dam and Cote Farm
c 120 Fieldfare: c 30 feeding with the Redwing, plus flocks of 70 and 30 over south
15+ Blackbirds
4 Mistle Thrush
Single flock of 70 Starlings moving around the area
2 Great Spotted Woodpeckers
1 Cormorant on the reservoir

Yesterday, 50+ Chaffinch made their way down the valley in dribs and drabs, between 7.00 and 7.30am. Largest flock I could make out was 13.

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Monday 29th October 2018, 6.30 - 7.20am.

Walkerwood area.

c 230 Fieldfare, as follows: 150 west, 70 east, and 10 in hawthorn bushes near Walkerwood Dam
c 20 Redwing mixed in with the Fieldfare flocks
c 25 Chaffinch flew down the valley at first light
Lesser Redpoll heard
1 drake Mandarin
13 Mallard
1 Grey Wagtail
1 Kestrel
1 Grey Heron

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Saturday 27th October 2018, 9.30 - 11.00am.

From Walkerwood Dam, up to Wild Bank, via the rifle ranges.

1 Raven tumbling over Wild Bank
1 Peregrine briefly over Wild Bank, before heading west towards Ashton
3 Kestrels Wild Bank

The usuals around the feeders, including one Willow Tit, and several Bullfinch

Plenty of berries around, but the only thrushes seen were several Blackbirds, and one Mistle Thrush at Flaxfield.

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Wednesday 24th October 2018, 6.30 - 7.30am.

2 Woodcock flew over Walkerwood Dam and into the Country Park at 7.18 and 7.20am, my first sighting since midsummer. Given the location, I would guess at recently arrived migrants, rather than resident birds, although it is obviously impossible to say for sure.

6 Red-legged Partridge were in the fields on Harridge, overlooking Walkerwood, on Sunday.


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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Wednesday 17th October 2018, 6.30 - 7.20am.

Walkerwood area.

Several Mistle Thrush attempting a bit of singing well before it was light; at both sides of the reservoir, and in the country park.

Last night, 2 Tawny Owls were calling, from Cock Wood and the country park, around dusk. On Monday evening, one was in the trees above the Gamekeeper's cottage.

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Sunday 14th October 2018, 8.30 - 10.15am

Around the Walkerwood area, in heavy rain throughout.

1 Mandarin drake swimming with 12 Mallard
1 Cormorant
4 Mistle Thrush over
1 Chiffchaff
A very noisy group of 20+ Long-tailed Tits. I never tire of watching this species - such beautiful, delicate little birds.
6+ Goldcrest. Seems to have been an influx.
1 Lesser Redpoll
Bullfinch
Chaffinch
Good numbers of Robin and Wren

Usuals on the feeders, including Willow Tit and Nuthatch.

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Thursday 11th October 2018, 9.30 - 11.00am.

Around Walkerwood and Cote Farm.

1 Grey Heron
1 Buzzard over Harridge
1 Kestrel
2 Chiffchaff
5 Meadow Pipits
4 Greenfinch
4 Goldfinch
1 Lesser Redpoll
6 Mistle Thrush

On the feeders.

1 Willow Tit
Nuthatch
Great, Blue, and Coal Tits

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Monday 8th October 2018, 6.30 - 7.30pm.

A small flock of Redwing passed west over Walkerwood Dam at 7.20pm
2 Tawny Owls calling, from Cock Wood, and the woods above the Gamekeeper's cottage, at dusk.
Female Kestrel hunting from a telephone wire next to Walkerwood Dam just before dark.

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Saturday 6th October 2018, 9.00 - 11.45am.

Brushes Valley, to Higher Swineshaw Reservoir.

A solitary Redwing dropped into the treetops around Lower Swineshaw scout hut. Seen off immediately by two Mistle Thrush.
6 Reed Bunting
15+ Meadow Pipits
1 Kestrel
Several Goldcrest calling from the woods
Nuthatch calling along the valley

Several Pied Wagtails heard around the Cock Knarr side of Brushes Reservoir at 6.30pm. This area has held a winter roost in the past.
14 Mallard on the reservoir.

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Tuesday 2nd October 2018, 6.30 - 7.15am.

Walkerwood Dam.

1 Mandarin drake
1 Grey Heron
Mallards, Canada Geese, and little else, on a gloomy morning.

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Monday 1st October 2018, 6.30 - 7.15am.

Walkerwood Dam.

1 drake Mandarin
4 Mallard
20 Canada Geese
2 singing Chiffchaff
8 Chaffinch over west



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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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From Stocks Lane up to the Trig Point via Wildbank Lower down 2 Swallows, 3 Jay, 1 Mistle Thrush and 3 Red-legged Partridge Higher up 1 Kestrel, 1 Red Grouse and what I would expect must be the same two Raven in Davids post from earlier today

-- Edited by Stuart Pike on Saturday 29th of September 2018 07:18:46 PM

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Saturday 29th September 2018, 9.00 - 11.00am.

Wild Bank SBI, taking in Hobson Moor.

2 Stonechat, my first of 2018 in the area, following the disappearance this year of the regular breeding pair. These appeared to be a first year male and female.
100+ Meadow Pipits
c 25 Skylark, the majority of which dropped in from the north around 10 o'clock
1 Linnet over south
1 Buzzard
1 Red Grouse

2 Ravens were on the pylons at Walkerwood earlier.


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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Thursday 13th September 2018, 8.00 - 10.30am.

Around Wild Bank Hill, and Hobson Moor. Majority of sightings in Wild Bank SBI, hence this thread.

1 female / juvenile Merlin low over the moor from the direction of the Trig Point, down Gallows Clough, having a go at flushed Meadow Pipits
150+ Meadow Pipits, everywhere this morning
10+ Skylarks
1 Great Spotted Woodpecker perched up on a pylon, on top of the moor, called, then flew off southwest.
1 Rook
1 Little Owl

Also stumbled across a Lesser Spotted Roger Baker, loitering on Hobson Moor Road.

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Wednesday 12th September 2018, 6.30 - 7.15am.

Walkerwood Dam.

1 drake Mandarin on the reservoir
3 Grey Herons
Chiffchaff singing
Several Nuthatch calling

Otherwise quiet

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Monday 10th September 2018, 6.30 - 7.20am

Walkerwood Dam.

1 Kingfisher, again on the depth marker posts
2 Cormorant
3 Grey Herons
38 Canada Geese
7 Mallard
1 Willow Tit, in a small mixed flock
6 Bullfinch
6+ noisy Jays
1 Kestrel over Harridge

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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David Walsh wrote:

Friday 7th September 2018, 6.30 - 7.15am.

Walkerwood Dam.

1 Kingfisher on the exposed depth gauge posts near the dam. Only ever an occasional record here - almost always in September.
........................................................................................................
Just thinking about that one Dave ....... in the past Walkerwood has always been a fly only Trout fishery on a "put and take" basis with the fish being to big for a Kingfisher.
Now that an angling club has stocked it with coarse fish things might improve especially if they breed with plenty of fry in the margins ??

Roger.



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Friday 7th September 2018, 6.30 - 7.15am.

Walkerwood Dam.

1 Kingfisher on the exposed depth gauge posts near the dam. Only ever an occasional record here - almost always in September.
4 Grey Herons
3 Grey Wagtails
1 Pied Wagtail
1 Willow Tit
2 Nuthatch
1 Chiffchaff singing
Lesser Redpoll over

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Wednesday 5th September 2018, 6.30 - 7.30am.

Walkerwood area.

House Martins started moving over Walkerwood Reservoir at 6.55, pausing , then heading roughly south west. A rough estimate would be 150, with about 10 Swallows mixed in. Still birds passing through as I left.
3 Grey Herons
1 Cormorant
A flock of c 20 Goldfinch
1 Grey Wagtail

-- Edited by David Walsh on Wednesday 5th of September 2018 07:57:03 AM

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Monday 3rd September 2018, 6.30 - 7.30am.

Walkerwood area.

A mixed flock of Hirundines moved through south west, and consisted of roughly:
60 Swallows
40 House Martins
1 Swift

5 Lesser Redpoll were moving around the dam area

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Saturday 1st September 2018, 8.30 - 11.30am.

From Walkerwood, to Higher Swineshaw and Lees Hill.

Higher Swineshaw Reservoir.

1 Tufted Duck,
c 20 Linnet feeding around the dam
2 Pied Wagtail
1 Grey Wagtail
c 30 Meadow Pipits
1 juvenile Stonechat feeding on the dam banking. Pair of adults at Lees Hill.
2 Buzzards over the moor
1 Kestrel
Chiffchaff singing between Higher and Lower Swineshaw Reservoirs

Walkerwood area.

1 Cormorant
2 Grey Herons
1 Grey Wagtail
1 Pied Wagtail
Nuthatch are very much in evidence around the feeders
1 Willow Tit also on the feeders
A lot of very noisy Jays around at present

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Thursday 23rd August 2018, 9.00 - 11.30am

From Walkerwood to Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, then back across Harridge Moor, in intermittent drizzly rain.

Harridge Moor.

1 Wheatear
1 Whinchat
2 juvenile Stonechat
2 Ravens on the pylons

1 male Reed Bunting at Higher Swineshaw
1 male Stonechat plus juvenile at Lees Hill
Nuthatch at Brushes Cottages, and Walkerwood
Great Spotted Woodpecker at Walkerwood
A Buzzard over Wild Bank, and one at Brushes Valley
1 Cormorant on Walkerwood Reservoir

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Sunday 19th August 2018, 9.45 - 11.15am, in heavy rain.

1 Spotted Flycatcher, feeding amongst Willowherb and Himalayan Balsam, next to Walkerwood Dam
2 juvenile Grey Wagtails in Walkerwood overflow
c 15 Swallows around Walkerwood Dam, some feeding juveniles in flight
1 Cormorant on Brushes Reservoir
5 Kestrels noisily together over Harridge

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Saturday 18th August 2018, 7.00pm.

8 redhead Goosander on Brushes Reservoir
1 juvenile Grey Heron on Brushes shoreline
1 Cormorant flew off Walkerwood Reservoir at 6.45
1 Kestrel on the wires by Walkerwood

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Saturday 18th August 2018, 9.30 - 11.30am

Around Wild Bank, and Hollingworthhall Moor, in a gusty wind.

1 Wheatear moving along the moor edge, on the Hobson Moor side of the hill, was the highlight of a desperately quiet morning.
10 Swallows feeding over the moor
15+ Meadow Pipits

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Friday 17th August 2018, 6.30 - 7.30am

8 redhead Goosander still present at 7.30am, tucked into the far eastern corner of Walkerwood Reservoir.
Couple of Chiffchaff singing

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Thursday 16th August. Evening.

Goosander. 8 redheads landed on Walkerwood Res at 20.30 hrs.
Sparrowhawk. 2.
Buzzard being harassed by a pair of Ravens over Brushes Res.

Roger.

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Tuesday 14th August 2018, evening.

Wild Bank Hill.

2 juvenile Wheatear feeding in the fields around Shaw Moor Farm

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Saturday 11th August 2018, 9.00 - 11.30am

Brushes Valley, to Higher Swineshaw.

5 Spotted Flycatchers, a pair feeding at least three fledglings, one of which was being fed on the ground, with a possibly injured wing.
3 Buzzards, one over Harridge Moor, a juvenile at Wild Bank, and a juvenile perched within 100 yards of the houses at Brushes Road
2 juvenile Kestrels over Harridge Moor, and a male at Higher Swineshaw
1 male Stonechat at Higher Swineshaw, and a female with a juvenile at Harridge Moor
24 Red Grouse counted on Harridge and Swineshaw Moors
c 30 Meadow Pipits
30 House Martin feeding over the valley
2 Raven at Walkerwood
52 Black-headed Gulls on Higher Swineshaw Reservoir
Good numbers of juvenile Dunnock around the moors

A quiet morning, but a satisfying one.


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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Sunday 5th August 2018, 9.30 - 11.00am

Harridge Moor, and the woods above the Gamekeeper's cottage.

100+ each, of Swallows and House Martins feeding over the moor
A Willow Warbler feeding at least two fledglings in the bracken, a few others singing.
10+ Coal Tits calling in the trees, very much in evidence in all the wooded areas at present.
1 Nuthatch
4 Treecreepers, with more calling
Several noisy Jays
1 Kestrel over Harridge
4 Kestrel, looking like a family group, noisily around Lower Swineshaw dam
1 Buzzard perched over at Wild Bank

Walkerwood Reservoir.

1 Cormorant
1 Grey Heron, present constantly at the moment. A juvenile bird has also been seen on a couple of mornings over the past week
1 Grey Wagtail
1 Pied Wagtail
2 Moorhen

Yesterday, around Higher Swineshaw.

No waders at all
42 Black-headed Gulls
1 juvenile Grey Wagtail
2 Pied Wagtails
3 Mallard
1 Reed Bunting flushed from low in the bracken on the track towards Irontongue, the only one seen or heard. This species seems to have disappeared from the area since the fire, despite their territories (at least half a dozen) being in areas of bracken around the reservoir untouched by the fire. I can only assume it is due to the disturbance caused by the firefighting machinery and personnel?
One pair of Stonechat with at least 2 juveniles at Lees Hill
At least 6 Lesser Redpoll between Higher and Lower Swineshaw
1 Linnet
c 35 Meadow Pipits on Higher Swineshaw dam banking

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Thursday 2nd August 2018, 9.00pm

Walkerwood Dam.

c 60 Swift. 10 feeding over the country park area, and c 50 moving through south west
4 House Martins through south west

I reinstated the feeders last week, and have had regular sightings once more, of the Willow Tit.
The other species which has visited regularly is the Nuthatch, which is very evident at present, all around the valley. They seem to have had a successful breeding season.
A single Common Sandpiper was the only wader present at Higher Swineshaw Reservoir on Tuesday evening.

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Tuesday 24th July 2018, evening

Higher Swineshaw Reservoir.

1 Green Sandpiper
2 Common Sandpiper
10+ Pied Wagtails, mainly juveniles, feeding on the shoreline.
1 Grey Wagtail
1 Buzzard, looking very pale against the blackened moor.

Lower Swineshaw Reservoir

3 Lapwing
5 Pied Wagtails
3 Stonechat (male and two juveniles) on the moor above the reservoir

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Saturday 21st July 2018, 9.00am - 12.00pm

Higher Swineshaw Reservoir

It's amazing the difference a muddy shoreline makes. All four reservoirs in the valley are stone-lined, and poor for waders, other than Common Sandpiper, which breed here. A combination of low rainfall, and (mainly) a vast quantity of water being pumped out of Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, to douse the recent moorland fire, has meant that the water level is the lowest that anyone can remember, giving a muddy shoreline to the entire reservoir, save for the dam itself.

1 Green Sandpiper
6 Common Sandpipers
1 Redshank
31 Black-headed Gulls
3 Pied Wagtails
2 Stonechat (male and juvenile), in the bracken
20+ Meadow Pipits, many feeding along the shore

Lower Swineshaw Reservoir

7 Lapwing
10 Mallard
Lesser Redpoll around the scout hut

Grasshopper Warbler reeling by Brushes Road (as it was at 11.00pm yesterday)

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Thursday 19th July 2018, 8.00 - 9.00pm

Grasshopper Warbler still reeling in the field adjacent to Brushes Road
30+ Swifts over Wild Bank
1 Buzzard over Wild Bank
Grey Heron on Walkerwood Reservoir

Earlier today in Cock Wood

Great Spotted Woodpecker
Nuthatch
Juvenile Treecreepers
Couple of family groups of Long-tailed Tits
Juvenile Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Chaffinch
Juvenile Great Tits everywhere
Several Lesser Redpoll

30+ Swallows, mainly juveniles, over Walkerwood Reservoir
Juvenile Cormorant on Walkerwood
Kestrel over Harridge

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Sunday 15th July, 9.00pm

Grasshopper Warbler reeling from rough grassland, in the field by Brushes Road, opposite the Country Park.

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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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Saturday 14th July 2018, 8.00 - 11.00am

Lower Swineshaw Reservoir

2 Common Sandpiper, an agitated adult, and a well grown juvenile. They were late breeding this year, but this is a breeding record that I thought I'd missed, due to the recent access restrictions in the valley. Good to see.
c 30 Meadow Pipits feeding around the dam banking
1 Pied Wagtail
1 Buzzard on the shoreline
5 Lesser Redpoll around the scout hut

Higher Swineshaw, and environs

4 Stonechat, a family party of a pair, plus at least two juveniles in the bracken, towards Lees Hill
4 Common Sandpiper
c 60 Black-headed Gulls
3 Lapwing flew over Lees Hill, from the direction of Arnfield, and dropped in briefly, before continuing west
40+ Meadow Pipits, mainly, as at Lower Swineshaw, around the dam banking
2 Pied Wagtails, an adult and well grown juvenile
3 Blackbirds, one carrying food into bracken, right at the edge of the burned Moor
1 Goldfinch
2 Lesser Redpoll in the bracken
1 Buzzard

Brushes Valley

6+ Treecreeper, calling everywhere, and feeding in twos, presumably young birds?
Several Coal Tits, a mix of adults and juveniles, one carrying food


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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018


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It has surprised me how much wildlife has remained in such a bleak and totally destroyed habitat to be honest David.

I have removed several toads from the moor, Meadow Pipits still wander around the scorched earth cool enough for them to step onto and butterflies and impressive dragonflies still populate the untouched gullies, few that they are.

There is also evidence of some regeneration in areas not too severely burned, with new green shoots already coming through.

Of course, much of the moor is depressingly damaged, with earth reduced to nothing more than deep ash fuelling impressively large and regular 'dust devils' and heavy rains will off course bring their own further problems to the area too.

A sad state but nature has its way and it will eventually get back to what it was though it will take time, in many areas, lots of time.

 



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Ian McKerchar (forum administrator and owner)


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Date:

Thursday 12th July 2018, 9.30 - 11.30am.

Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, and surrounding area, for the first time in three weeks.

Swineshaw Moor, to the north and north east of the reservoir is blackened and lifeless, but the reservoir itself produced more than I would usually expect, particularly given the amount of plant and personnel still arraigned around the area of the dam.

3 Common Sandpiper
3 Lapwing
1 Snipe flushed from the overflow
3 Mallard
2 Pied Wagtails, and adult and juvenile
61 Black-headed Gulls, many juvenile
1 Willow Warbler
1 male Stonechat at an existing territory within 100 yards of the dam.


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The dwindling Higher Swineshaw Reservoir, surrounded by a blackened Swineshaw Moor - July 2018
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This forum is dedicated to the memory of Eva Janice McKerchar; rest in peace mum.