my 3rd full year of watching the area 2008 again proved to another good year
130 visits which produced a total of 61 species of bird,though down on 2007 (77),the bad weather in the summer and lack of car in late autumn reduced the visits.
great creasted grebe 14th july
shoveler 26th december
red breasted merganser 22nd july
green sandpiper 15th august
iceland gull 2nd april and 22nd december
long eared owl 6th august
collared dove 8th april
the above were all patch firsts for me,out of the 7 the 2 most surprising ones are the long eared owl and collared dove as the area is so bleak and remote.the iceland gull was the first in the halifax area for 10 years and the merganser is not annual in halifax.
other highlights were once again common scoter this has now turned up every year since 2006.the first buzzards for 2 years.yellow wagtail was the only record for halifax this year.twite were seen in good numbers during the autumn with the largest flock being 59 on the 19th september (one fellow blogger visited green withens on the way home to birmingham for twite).
goldfinch peaked at 21 on the 20th september,i think both the twite and goldfinches were attracted by the large number of thistle plants seeding at the time.3 ravens on the 12th september heading south made for an eerie visit as they passed over in low mist calling.
whinchat was recorded for the first time since 2006 with a total of 5 birds.
on the downside a large moorland fire in spring on the 27th may to the north of the reservoir put an end to breeding of curlews,dunlin,golden plover,meadow pipit and skylark.
illegal off roading seemed to be the decrease during the summer but unfortunately at the present time seems to be more active than ever.with what appear to be now 'roads' cut into various hillsides,most notably at spa clough by the oxygrains bridge and on greeen wolden edge which is the width of a dual carriageway.
all the best for 2009 keep up the blogging and wherever your local patch is enjoy it.