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Comment on Another missing hen harrier

Good and thanks for the clarification. I thought he meant the coalition groups of the Hen Harrier Actionless Planless-plan. On the ground the RSPB is fantastic at wildlife crime reporting and in the European Courts fighting the government on muirbur

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More From The Hills

I’m not exactly an insomniac, more a light sleeper so these mid-summer mornings often find me awake at 4 in the morning. The kettle was on as I munched a breakfast banana. Through the kitchen window I could see the pipistrelle bats flying around the garden. We seem to have a lot this year as witnessed by the top of the recycle bin and the hundreds of droppings beneath the spot where the bats enter and leave the roof space. No problem, the bats are more than welcome to the many insects they consume. 

Bat Droppings

It wasn’t the brightest morning but I decided to head into the hills and try and bit more photography before the breeding season ends. 

The Bowland Hills

The bird list was much as last week although there was a definite increase in the number of Meadow Pipits and Pied Wagtails, more than a hundred pipits and dozens of Pied Wagtails. I saw both species carrying food whereby I imagine by mid to late June the adults will be on their second broods. 

Meadow Pipit

Meadow Pipit

 Pied Wagtail

A juvenile Lapwing wasn’t for moving from the roadside. The poor light and occasional drizzle needed ISO1600. Maybe there will be a sunny spell for the next visit? 


I saw at 4 or more Snipe this morning with at least two of them in “drumming” mode but none would pose on a fence like the one last week. “Drumming”(or “winnowing”) is a sound produced by Snipe as part of their courtship display flights. The sound is produced mechanically in the slipstream of a power dive (rather than vocally) by the vibration of the modified outer tail feathers held out at a wide angle to the body.


I saw three Red Grouse in exactly the same patch of ground as a week ago but no Grey Partridge today. 

Red Grouse

Taking care not to scare them prematurely the local Oystercatchers are pretty amenable to a photograph, especially if they have young around and need to keep an eye on them. 



Once very common in Bowland the Redshank seem pretty scarce up here nowadays, a casualty of the overall decline in upland birds like Curlew, Lapwing, Golden Plover and Dunlin. A Redshank came to see me off from its patch before flying back to where it had youngsters some 30 yards away. 


Along the stream were two or three pairs of Common Sandpipers, one pair protesting loudly when the car stopped alongside their patch. It was a clear sign of youngsters about, so I left them in peace. The picture is more than a little blurred in the poor light coupled with not enough ISO. 

Common Sandpiper

Other birds today – Mistle Thrush, Song Thrush, Greenfinch, Blackcap, Chiffchaff, House Martin, Sand Martin, Swallow, Swift, Blackbird, Siskin, Linnet, Woodpigeon, Stock Dove, Collared Dove , Chaffinch, Reed Bunting, Willow Warbler, Grey Wagtail.

Linking today to Anni's Birding.

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Heysham Heliport mitigation fails at the first hurdle

Heysham Obs
It has been a long road to try and exclude dog walkers and other people from the old heliport site, leading to lack of disturbance of the wader roost along the seawall.  Re-fencing was a mitigation measure for Peel Energy's single wind turbine and this was carried out about a fortnight ago.   It was stressed time and again the the roost on the seawall would only be undisturbed if either the fencing measures were secure or the exclusion notices were being enforced by security or both.  The fencing at the Half moon bay café end is fine, but the south end saw just an extra gate and a lock and was clearly still easy to access, albeit only a matters of a few metres from the security base.   

Wondering why the small summering Oystercatcher flock was not using the newly secured seawall, spent a bit of time today observing what was happening and sure enough the regular dog walkers who park and access from the Near Naze are just having the inconvenience of hurdling or climbing over the gate,  otherwise it is business as usual

Went to have a polite chat to security as one of these dog walkers also parked on the double yellow lines to see what their take was and I was informed that they had received no instructions to apprehend anyone  entering the old heliport site

Please can this be sorted out, Peel Ports?  Thanks

Red Nab and area
Med Gull - just adult in head moult, full summer adult and single 2CY in a much-reduced gull presence.  Again there did not seem to be a lot of food on Heysham One outfall
Grey Heron - 1

Nothing startling with Celypha striana new of the year


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