Monday, 21 January 2013

19th January 2013, A cold day in the valley

With a light covering of snow a walk up to Farnhill Moor seemed a reasonable option for today, the weather forecast for the day was for freezing temperatures and an easterly wind so I was wrapped up well in thermal clothing!

The views were hardly oustanding as I climbed up towards the top of the moor, the dull light prevented long distance sights.

Reaching Jubilee Tower I had seen no wildlife at all and decided to drop down into the valley so see if I would have more success.

The Yaktrax grip aids I had fitted to my boots came in really handy on the steep descent path which leads down to Farnhill Wood.

A look to the east disclosed the views were no better in that direction! I took to the road for a short while towards the village of Bradley before heading down the fields to the canal.

At least I found some wildlife on the way down as a lovely robin chirped merrily from a tree...

Birds flitted from tree to tree by the canal, a look through the binoculars disclosed they were goldfinches and I managed to get near enough for a decent photograph.

With the canal being mostly frozen sightings would be limited and there would certainly be no kingfishers to see, they will have moved to the river now and it is much harder to see them on there.

Movement by the far edge of the canal alerted me to the presence of a wren, not great light for these but one can only do ones best!!

Passing this always well kept garden I noted that snowmen don't have to be made of snow!!

This black headed gull seemed at home on the church roof......
Moorhens will stay by the canal, icy or not, they can find food in the field margins...

There was certainly a chilly wind, I find it difficult to manipulate the camera controls with even thin gloves on and each time I took a glove off to take a picture it took a good while to warm my hand up again!

I took a small track down towards the river, some patieent following of a small unidentified bird revealed a lovely female stonechat...

More patience and some careful fieldcraft were required as I spotted a fieldfare perched in a bush top across a field, moving slowly and carefully I managed to get quite close....

There wasn't much in evidence on the river, conditions dictated that I kept moving at a reasonable pace to keep warm, I did stop to listen to this robin though...

Soon after this I saw a couple of waxwings in flight, no chance of photographs on this occasion:-(

A group of geese, probably greylags circled overhead before landing and feeding in an adjacent field.

I spotted a lapwing too...

I headed back up to the canal towpath as it leads directly into Silsden, rather than the river which is a mile or so from town.

The frozen state is almost complete, one small thawed section is by the boatyard and these mallards seemed unsure as to risk the cold water or not!

A decent range of birds had been seen and a few miles walked, not a bad day:-)

1 comment:

  1. Lovely third album viewed tonight Dave, the fieldfare was amazing. What good sightings that day. I recognise the Jubilee tower, we were there on a very sunny summer day last year.