Saturday, 28 January 2012

28th January 2012, Crossbills & blue skies

A great benefit of being a trusted part of the "birding" community is the willingness to share locations of rarely seen birds. Some, like the short eared owls, must be kept to vague description because too much human presence means they will move on somewhere else, today we visited Elslack Moor plantation home to crossbills. This is much easier for the birds if they don't like your presence they disappear into the conifers!

Moving slowly and as quietly as we could we were rewarded:-

Moving through the forest we had a brief glimpse of a weasel plus the usual woodland suspects of wren and robin, a short walk and we returned to the car for a warm up and a coffee. Taking a different path on our return to the wood paid immediate dividends, a small flock and feeding too. Hard to photograph in the treetops but what a joyous song to behold.

A little frustrated at the lack of clear shots but woodland photography is never easy! We will return.

A text from my old school mate lead us over to Barden, kite, buzzard and kestrel had all been seen from the raptor view point. A buzzard flew close overhead while we there chatting, my camera was in the car:-((  We took a short walk upstream beside the Wharfe, a dipper was in clear sight, across a wide river the photo could be better.

My Panasonic bridge camera serves me well while I am learning my SLR craft, focusing through branches is hard for once I got this great tit about right:-)

Walking for the day is done, twilight beckons and all of a sudden a mighty racket from some trees on the far bank of the river Wharfe. Fieldfares and starlings, a strange mixture!

And then the drive home....and a beautiful light over Lancashire! Us border inhabitants have learned to co-exist, some of us even enjoy one anothers company!

What a wonderful day! Tomorrow depending, spuds to get ready for chitting and a kingfisher hunt.


  1. What a wonderful day out Dave. I don't think I have ever seen Crossbills, let alone heard their song. I like the photos of the Fieldfares & starlings in the bare branches.

  2. Lovely photos I must say. You must be very patient to get the bird shots!