Saturday, 1 December 2018

SNIPPETS OF WEALTH (DECEMBER 2018)


(If you still want to view the AUTUMN MIGRATION BIRD REPORTS FOR 2018 PLEASE CLICK HERE)



Morecambe Bay from Heysham - Kindly shared by Brad Cheek (9th December 2018)



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Starlings again!! My copy for the December issue of BURTON NEWS  compiled around November 20th 2018 and posted here on 8th December 2018 (Bryan Yorke)

It’s not all about migration, but there again maybe it is indirectly!  But I can honestly say whilst having the pleasure during the early mornings of watching the many different species of birds fly high over our village, it’s also been incredible in its own right to watch the thousands of Starlings come through heading East in a morning, after leaving their communal roost which at the moment is over at Silverdale Moss.
Up until this last few days (today 20th November 2018) I have had some average counts of between 2 to 5 thousand birds come almost on a daily basis, but there have been some really special mornings when I have had approx 18000 over (Friday 26th October) and another count of approx 18000 at 0712hrs on Thursday 1st November, and again approx. 15000 over on Saturday 10th November, and the final up to date big one was approx 17000 on the 14th November, I guess there will be many more mornings to come when we will get good counts if we are prepared to get up early to witness the fantastic Starling activity.
On these high number mornings in particular, the sky is just full of Starlings coming through in big balls or sometimes they take on a different approach and are in a “linear” thick horizontal wave which is several metres deep and extends as far as over Holme Park Fell/Farleton to the north side and continuous all the way to Dalton Hall on the south side. The structure of the passage changes all in accordance to the wind on the day and if the wind is of a moderate south west (eg blowing in the face of the birds) it will usually make them travel through low down, although if it is not a windy day the birds can be so high up that you might even have a job to see them, although the activity is still going on and you would need to look high up into the skies with binoculars to see them.
I just wish I could “bottle it” and share it, because it is so fantastic to witness these spectacles although they only last for several minutes at best.
Some mornings they give me such an inner lift that I get an inspiration to want to write a little verse or two whilst having just witnessed and in some cases felt (the draught) from them going past me within inches.

“Hello darlings – Starlings!
I felt a draught to my ears and heard a clear
“Wush” as you all passed by in a flicker of a wing,
In only a split second of our time,
Also was held to a super-still stance,
Could have reached out and touched you
My iridescent early morning friends.

When they start to join us from September onwards more and more are coming into our area on a daily basis throughout September, October and even as late as November, but generally peak around the third week in October, they will come in their squadrons and shaped like lots of little bullets shooting past you!  And their squadrons can be anything from half a dozen up to over 100 and they always come from the East direction having travelled over the North Sea from places far away like the Baltics and Netherlands.  Most of the birds we get around here will complete their journey by the time they reach their communal roost sites at Leighton Moss or Silverdale Moss, occasionally small roost sites may become established in more localised areas of Burton using trees close to Tanpits. Here they will spend their winters and go out every morning in search of food in the surrounding countryside.

One of the recent mornings whilst vismigging or counting Chaffinch moving through I had a cracking Starling morning although the Chaffinch numbers were well down, so I did a little “ditty”….

“Nowt about today, once the reet dollop of shebbies, had passed to the East,
18000 of the 100000 o’er my head, and nah a got a thumping headache”

(Shebbies is a sort of slang word used to describe Starlings and used throughout Lancashire)

Anyone wishing to view the Starlings leaving can get good views from the top of Vicarage Lane, but if you are viewing from there do not chose an ENE wind or you may well be disappointed by the numbers you will get!


If you want to enjoy a great spectacle watching them on their daily return, obviously the best place will be at their roost sites (Silverdale Moss from approx.1600 hours onwards) were you may well be lucky and treated to the “murmurations”.  If you just want to watch hundreds of Starlings come back in at night I like to watch them from the area just past the Storth Engineering Works and under the railway bridge and there you can usually see them whilst they cross over the mosses (at the moment it’s about 1545 hours onwards)

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Diary notes from October 31st 2018 - INTERESTING STARLING FACTS - Posted on 7th December 2018 (Bryan Yorke)






This beautiful red sky is what the Starlings will have witnessed at approx 0706hrs on the morning of Wed 31st October 2018 (Halloween). I am stood at my watchpoint at Taylors Field (named Greenslet) which is Off Vicarage Lane, Burton In Kendal). The photo depicts the areas to my North East and East.  The large wooded area you can see in the photo is “Pickles Wood” and Lancelot Clark Storth (CWT) which lie to the west flank of the Hutton Roof complex.
This photo captures the situation on just how the sky looked towards the horizon (east) at the time of the incident, although if you were looking to a more south east direction from my watchpoint, then the sky would have been more colour intense as shown in the “actual” photo below which was taken at the time of the incident.





Approx 2,000 Starling came through in one wave (after leaving their roost which is about 5 miles to my West at Silverdale Moss) and would expect them to reach me about 3-4 minutes after they have left their roost site. Normally they would fly over me and continue East to their feeding grounds around Kirkby Lonsdale and all areas in the localities.
Just as they passed me and at a height of approx 50ft, they unexpectedly all tumbled down quickly to the nearest tree (eg: The Ash tree shown in the first photo toward the bottom of the lane, with most of the overspill of birds going into the trees of Pickles Wood (to the right hand of the Ash tree) which lies to the base of Hutton Roof to take cover. There they all started chattering with an enormous collective sound just like you would normally hear if you went along to their evening roost site. It’s quite obvious the birds were agitated.
When the red skies on their horizon had almost subsided perhaps 20 minutes later the birds then started to leave the temporary holding area in small parties of 50 or more at a time, the evacuation lasted for some 20 minutes.  I can only think that perhaps the sight of that red sky had "spooked" them! or maybe they were showing that they wanted to get into the "Halloween" mood (spooky)......



Added by Bryan Yorke on 4th December 2018 - Silverdale Cove (Click over to enlarge)


Silverdale Cove - taken from footpath leading up to The Lots -  March 2018

Thursday, 1 November 2018

SNIPPETS OF WEALTH (November 2018)




Received Wednesday 28th November 2018  with thanks from - Robert Ashworth (Kendal)

Has kindly sent some of his "Hutton Roof" records which include: Highlights:-
Brambling - 4 south Burton Fell 2.11.18.
Crossbill - 6 north Burton Fell (including at least 2 red males) 2.11.18. Last record of a good autumn for this species. Also Siskin, Peregrine, Woodcock (first 22.11.18) and Snipe

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Sunday 25th November 2018 - "My incredible view tonight" from Far Arnside by Brenda Allen (Click over to enlarge)





Thursday 22nd November 2018 - The Collapsed Jetty at Jenny Browns Point by Brad Cheek (Click over to enlarge)




Tuesday 20th November 2018 - Lone Tree - Silverdale by Brad Cheek (Click over to enlarge)




Sunday 18th November 2018 - Area close to Jenny Browns Point by Brad Cheek (Click over to enlarge)




Saturday 17th November 2018 - Chocolate Box - Warton Church by Brad Cheek (Click over to enlarge)





Saturday 17th November 2018 - Dalton - sunrise at approx -0745hrs by Bryan Yorke




Thursday 15th November 2018 - Dalton (Nineteen Trees) - "Bubbles" by Bryan Yorke








Saturday  10th November 2018 - Dalton Crags and Hutton Roof Common (afternoon)

Just needed to do a check all around the Great Grey Shrike territories, but could not find our dear friend.  It's just that I was tipped off by Mike that there appeared to have been one over at Leighton Moss last week and he wanted to know if I had seen anything over on HR and so this prompted me to go and check, but also gave me chance to check on our old favourites the Green Spleenworts (asplenium viride) and also our fabulous Holly Ferns (Polystitchum lonchitis).

Green Spleenwort (asplenium viride) on Hutton Roof (10th Nov 2018)


Asplenium viride again but deep down a grike (one metre almost!)
Hutton Roof - 10th Nov 2018

Hard Shield Fern (Polystichum aculeatum), showing just how well it keeps preserved
when down within a grike, normally it would be well spent by now.

A very special friend! the Holly Fern (Polysticum lonchitis)
In fine fettle for the time of year

 And here is yet another favourite Holly Fern No.2 (Polystichum lonchitis with
Hard Shield Fern (Polystichum aculeatum)

 Each year the the aculeatum tends to throw up a "runt" and this is the contribution for 2018

 Another viride to the left and trichomanes to the right
A poor showing for the viride on this colony this year and I hope we don't lose it!

 A beautiful lichen

A beautiful lichen

This should be a contender for a work of art!!

Some nice Autumn burn

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Members of the Lancashire Wildlife Trusts - Croal-Irwell Local Group
(Wednesday 7th November 2018)


It was lovely to visit you yesterday evening down in Prestwich, Manchester. You were prepared to put up with the "chips and churps" and the psst and peeu's and hou-wits of Hutton Roof for a good one and half hour session. Your a cracking warm receptive group and already Stephen has been in touch to indicate that you might just want to put up with me again in the very near future. Thank you Bryan.


Another sunrise photo from yesterday over Hutton Roof (31st Oct 2018)


 Another sunrise photo from yesterday over Hutton Roof (31st Oct 2018)

Another sunrise photo from yesterday over Hutton Roof (31st Oct 2018)

Sunday, 30 September 2018

SNIPPETS OF WEALTH (October 2018)



If you want up to date information on the
Visible "Bird Migration" please check
out the following blog by scrolling down
or alternatively please click here





This beautiful red sky is what the Starlings were faced with this morning - Wed 31st October 2018 (Halloween) Hutton Roof (from my watchpoint Burton In Kendal)

I certainly experienced something different this morning, which I have never seen before!
About 2,000 Starling came through in one wave (after leaving their roost which is about 5 miles to my West) and normally would continue East to their feeding grounds around Kirkby Lonsdale etc., just has they passed me at about 50ft high they suddenly they all tumbled down quickly to the nearest tree or the trees of near by Pickles Wood close by at the base of Hutton Roof to take cover (never done this before to my knowledge).  There they all started chattering with a enormous collective sound just like you would normally hear if you went along to their evening roost site.  After the red skies on their horizon had almost subsided perhaps 20 minutes later the birds started to leave the temporary holding area in small parties of 50 or more at a time, the evacuation lasted for some 20 minutes.  I can only think that perhaps the sight of that red sky had "spooked" them! and they were showing that they wanted to get into the "Halloween" mood (spooky)......






Skyskape looking East - Vic Lane 26th October 2018 (Click over to enlarge)

Tonights sunset over Leighton Moss - taken from near the Mosses at Burton In Kendal (21st Oct 2018)

Enjoyed a lovely walk out by the old station at Burton, with thousands (yes thousands) of Starlings flying low overhead on their way back to Leighton Moss for their nightly roost.  Some of them formed balls over "Moss Farm" before carrying on. A fabulous hour which was at its peak at around 5.30pm. This was the sky at around 6pm. 

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(Talking in recent days to a Shooter before his first of the year pheasant shoot this coming Saturday)

The pleasant pheasant or pheasants are always stood in the lane,
Some are noisy and rambling amongst the fodder beet
They appear to give the impression they are so stupid!
But so soon they learn to recognise things, like -
the smell of the Gun, and car doors banging simultaneously,
" They are the sounds of the shooters coming after us they say" 
so on hearing this will try to skulk off in a orderly fashion one behind the other,
just like you see a train and its carriages,
The searching dogs will disturb your peace and quiet and make you lift to the skies

Just before all hell lets loose.....

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Elephant found under the railway tunnel at "Burtlands" on way to mosses
Click over to enlarge
14th October 2018

Tuesday 2nd October 2018 - Sunrise and Skyscapes over Burton In Kendal 0700hrs to 0830hrs










Monday 1st October 2018 - Checking out some nice fungi at the back of Kelker 1000hrs to 1100hrs

I think this might be "Ramariopsis subtilis"

 I think this might be "Ramariopsis subtilis"


I think this one is Wrinkled Club (Clavulina rugosa)


I think this one is WRINKLED CLUB (Clavulina rugosa)



Monday 1st October 2018 - "Old Lime Kiln" at the side of the footpath to the West side of Whinn Yeates Farm 0915hrs to 1000hrs.

Went this morning to check out the Ferns which are within the crevice and other areas of this old lime kiln. Here are some photos which show the area etc.



This photo shows the old filled in Lime Kiln which lies next to the farm track and footpath to the West side of the Whinn Yeates Farm. Note to the higher right of the photo a small open entry which may well have been the chimney, but its a cracking little fern area which can be seen in the following photos.

 This photo shows the track/footpath which runs just at the side of the Old Kiln. When you go by this route you come to a solitary large overhanging tree which is a "Ash" and if you count 107 average paces you will then have arrived at the Old Kiln.



 This is showing to the right hand side of the old kiln, but also shows to the middle right of the photo the opening area I mentioned which may well have been a chimney outlet or something, but if you look at the next photo you will see just what a special place it is for the ferns.

In this particular small section I was fortunate to recognize what I took to be Maidenhair Spleenwort (Trichomanes), also Brittle Bladder Fern, Black Spleenwort and Harts Tongue (Scollie)


This photo shows Maidenhair Spleenwort Fern, Rusty Back Fern and Black Spleenwort


Maidenhair Spleenwort Fern, Rusty Back Fern and Black Spleenwort


Asplenium Ceterach - Rusty Back Fern

Black Spleenwort

Common Wall Rue

Shows both Maidenhair Spleenwort and Rusty Back

Rusty Back

Maidenhair Spleenwort and Rusty Back Fern

Maidenhair Spleenwort, Rusty Back Fern and Black Spleenwort


Brittle Bladder Fern, Harts Tongue Fern, Maidenhair Spleenwort


Maidenhair Spleenwort which I wonder if it is a hybrid trichomanes and also in the photo is Black Spleenwort


Maidenhair Spleenwort and Brittle Bladder Fern


Maidenhair Spleenwort which I am sure could be a hybrid and will seek advice on this.


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Here below is a photo of the area on Holme Stinted Pastures which is fenced in.  Its a small pond area taken over by "Bullrush", but so important for the frogs etc. But also of great interest is the construction of the fencing and gate done in country traditional style.  Here is a couple of photos I took last week.