Saturday, 30 April 2011

Lancelot Clark Storth & Burton Fell (Sat Apr 30th 2011)

Saturday April 30th 2011 - Slape Lane and various parts of Lancelot Clark Storth & Burton Fell - Areas I have not checked out before.
Noticed on the way up Slape that Red Campion was out in force together with lots of Dogs Mercury, Speckled Wood Butterflies plentiful throughout, Green Veined and Orange Tip Butterflies and also Peacocks. Partridge could be heard from the Curwen Seat on Slape. Just before reaching the seat you pass a beautiful "Bluebell Wood" in full bloom (see photo)

On Lancelot Clark Storth, I had Angular Solomons Seal, Herb Paris, Woodruff, lots of Early Purple Orchids, Birds -Foot-Trefoil, also Brimstone Butterflies.

Found very old cleaned skull of roebuck, very small with maybe only a inch or so between antler stubs.

Also Bullfinch Piping, Willow Warblers, Chiffchaff and Blackcap could be heard closeby.

On higher Burton Fell as you come to the clearing, and turn left I found scores of superb Early Purple Orchids. Also closeby was lots of Common Milkwort both in the lovely blue colour and also lots of the white colours. Tormentil was growing on the Fell sides. Also another Brimstone Butterfly.

On way down Slape Lane I had a Holly Blue Butterfly.

Please click over photos to enlarge: Below top) Woodruff, 2nd down) Herb Paris, 3rd down) Common Milkwort (White) and bottom) Common Milkwort (Blue)

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Holme Park Nature Reserve & Clawthorpe Fell, Clawthorpe, Burton In Kendal

(Please click over sketch to enlarge).
I just had to include this in my blog today. I have spent the morning especially looking for Sloworms, which I am told are pretty common in these parts, but can I find one! Well some friends the other day were telling me about their "sloworm catching cat" and that every now and again it catches one and brings it home in its mouth, and I could envisage a sort of picture in my mind of this cat with lots of small eels (sloworms) wriggling about....

Had a lovely walk around Holme Park Nature Reserve and manage to record: 3 singing Willow Warblers, 1 Chiffchaff, Bullfinches, Chaffinches, Greenfinches, Nuthatch, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Blackbird, Robin, Dunnock, Blue and Coal Tits, Buzzard overhead. Also had a very brown coloured (short of other colours) Peacock Butterfly.

Also had Rue Leaved Saxifrage, Lords and Ladys, Bluebell, Dog Violets, Daisy, Gorse, Cowslips, Dogs Mercury, Herb Robert, Ramsons (nearby), Dandelion and also some Early Purple Orchids (struggle to do much). Also Angular Solomons Seal.

from 1045hrs to 1200hrs moved over to the nearby: Clawthorpe Fell, a super place mainly of Limestone Pavement. Just entering there was a Garden Warbler singing away, also had 3 singing Willow Warblers, 1 Chiffchaff, Bullfinch, Goldfinch, Woodpigeons, Swallow. Also lots of Speckled Wood Butterflies.

Also had Angular Solomons Seal, Dogs Mercury, Barren Strawberry, Dandelion, Daisy, Dogs Violet, Rue Leaved Saxifrage. Herb Robert.

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Marble Quarry - Beetham Park Woodlands yesterday, and Dalton and more Warblers.

(Please click over sketch to enlarge and click again to supersize if required).
Yesterdays walk from Beetham Caravan Park across the road and into the Marble Quarry, Beetham Park Areas. Had a nice variety of Fauna and Flora.....(From my notebook)

Today Tuesday April 26th 2011 (from 0845hrs to 1100hrs), checked out more of the pathways in Dalton Crags and located another Garden Warbler and a couple more Willow Warblers. Also a Tree Pipit was singing about 150 yards down the lane from the Charcoal Burners. Whether this is new or just moved across, time will tell. Several Bullfinch calling and more Goldcrest calling, plus another Blackcap, and a suspected Wood Warbler.

Saturday, 23 April 2011

Checking out the Warblers at Dalton and also Great Grey Shrike film Part 2

Saturday April 23rd 2011 (0900hrs - 1200hrs)
At first just did a check over at Plain Quarry, Dalton. The Fairy Foxglove is now starting to show. also had Fairy Flax. 8 Canada Geese overhead.

Then checked out the Dalton Crags area which lies immediately from Dalton Lane and with Storth Wood which lies to the immediate rear of the Dalton Hamlet and up to the boundaries with Lancelot.
Here I had: 15 Willow Warblers, 3 Chiffchaff, 1 Blackcap and also 1 Garden Warbler. Also present where Goldcrest (3 separate areas), Nuthatch (2 separate areas) a Great Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Bullfinch piping. 3 Speckled Wood Butterflies

Also had: Bugle, Lords and Ladies, Wood Sorrell, Dog Violets (everywhere), Bluebells, Dog's Mercury, Yellow Archangel at gates (but definately the introduced species).

"The forest is buzzing, and has come alive once more with the continuous droning of Hoverflies, which go on and on without break and at times it gets louder and louder when they get nearer to one's ear! I love this sound, its gaves the forest atmosphere! now and again you hear the Warbler, and his cousin the Chiffchaff".

Please click here to see Fraser's Part Two of the Great Grey Shrike which was present recently at Dalton. Yet another superb piece of work..... (I have also included within the Links local section)

Friday, 22 April 2011

Garden Warblers have arrived at Dalton Crags.

(Please click over map to enlarge, then click again to supersize if required)

Good Friday April 22nd 2011 from Plain Quarry up to Trig (0830hrs - 1030hrs)
On way to Plain Quarry had a pair of Red Legged Partridge near Russell Farm.
Garden Warblers had come in force during last night because I had six singing birds and watched at close distance, scattered around the bottom of Dalton (Plain Quarry Car Park vicinity).

The Tree Pipit in the clearing before you start going up the Crags was singing his little heart out, and what a wonderful sound he makes...

The Blackcaps seem to take a back seat when the Garden Warblers arrive, and are well outnumbered at present..

In total I had six Garden Warblers at points shown on the map above. The ones I numbered 4 and 5 where actually chasing around after one another probably in courtship mode!

Lots and lots of Willow Warblers singing and fairly well spread out in their distribution of the area.

Also: a few Meadow Pipits overhead heading N (one party 7), also Swallow, 2 Greylag Geese flew overhead N, Redpoll calling, and a Green Woodpecker seen at Dalton and yaffling.

(From 1415hrs to 1715hrs) Did a check out of Warblers in Slape Lane, Burton Fell (lower sections only) and Lancelot Clark Storth (lower sections only). I mapped out the areas and had the following results - purely registered on singing birds only.
Slape Lane, Burton In Kendal (from Vicarage Lane up to Curwen Wood seat): One Blackcap (possibly two) and one Willow Warbler.
Burton Fell (lower section only: 6 Willow Warbler, 3 Chiffchaff, 1 Blackcap and 1 Garden Warbler.
Lancelot Clark Storth (lower section only around to rear of Dalton hamlet) 15 Willow Warblers, 3 Chiffchaffs, 3 Blackcap, 1 Garden Warbler.

also: Purple Vetch, Cuckoo Flower, Greater Stitchworth, Ramsons (just starting to flower), Water Avens, Bugle and lots lots more, some still to identify. Also lots of Orange Tip Butterflies, Peacock Butterflies and just the odd Small Tortoishell Butterfly, Several Speckled Wood Butterflies.

In the Lancelot count I did notice that one of the Chiffchaffs calls was very different to the usual, with regard: It did the normal Chiff-Chaff, chiff-chaff, a few times as the norm and then would every now and again insert the additional notes of "diddoo diddoo" in the same syllabic range as the "chiff chaff", I have never heard this before and have took it to be probably a (malfunction), rather than the norm....

First "Early Purple Orchids" showing up near Trig Point. Also a little white flower with red anthers.

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

More Tree Pipits & Greenland Wheatears.....

( Please click over sketches to enlarge)

Went up to Trig today from Dalton plain quarry (0745hrs-0915hrs), More or less similar stuff about but definately increases in Blackcap with at least 3 singing from near to the Car Park, 1 Chiffchaff.

Definately more Tree Pipits have arrived eg: a new one in the open area just after leaving car park and before you climb crags, then another singing and displaying on the way up the Crags, and at least 3 singing and displaying on the deforested area.

GS Woodpecker drumming, also 5 Willow Warblers singing within 100 yards of the Trig point.

Also Bullfinches and Linnets at the Trig. 2 Swallows overhead, and also 2 Wheatear on the walls of the deforested, I am convinced these were "Northerns" especially because of the upright stance and also because of the mid-late April dates....

Then later went up to Derwentwater (Keswick) and had a cracking day, on way back drove around the back side of Thirlemere and what a superb place, it must be good here for Tree Pipits, and I would expect many Pied Flycatchers, and I wonder if theres Redstart! I must before long get up there and check it out...

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Great Grey Shrike film plus....Dalton update on Tree Pipits

Please click here to see the great film (on youtube) made by Fraser of the Great Grey Shrike recently at Dalton. What a great job, and you can see the Shrike with prey and impaling Lizards etc...... (Thanks Fraser, and can't wait for Part 2)...

Had a walk from Plain Quarry, and up through Dalton Crags to the Trig and back.
There is now 5 singing Tree Pipits, one in the Crags to the Whittington side of Plain Quarry and at least 4 singing and displaying in the Dalton deforested area. Also at least 2 Blackcaps near to the Plain Quarry Car Park, and also had Great Spotted Woodpecker, lots of Willow Warblers, 1 Chiffchaff, 2 single Swallows North, 7 Meadow Pipits North.

Common Lizard ran across entrance at Plain Quarry. Watching Roebuck for 5minutes, Also had a pair of Speckled Wood Butterflies on Dalton Lane.

Monday, 18 April 2011

Whitethroats, Garden Warblers & Blackcaps...Also Great Grey Shrike film by Fraser.

Monday 18th April 2011 (0900hrs - 1345hrs)

- Walk along the Canal from Carnforth to Borwick (0900hrs-1200hrs), then continued through Borwick, Priest Hutton and over Coat Green to Burton In Kendal (1200hrs - 1345hrs).
Along the route to Borwick I had:
2 singing Whitethroats in the immediate verges.
17 singing Willow Warblers in the immediate plus field hedgerows beyond.
10 singing Blackcaps in the immediate verges and field hedgerows beyond.
6 singing Chiffchaffs in the immediate verges and field hedgerows beyond.
2 Male Reed Bunting calling at 2 separate points close to the "phragmites" reedbeds

8 paired Moorhens, plus Oystercatchers (2), Meadow Pipits overhead (4) Several Swallows overhead, also Goldfinch, Linnets, Redpoll,Chaffinch, Greenfinch.

9 Small Tortoishell Butterflies, 3 Peacock Butterflies, 2 Green Veined White Butterflies,5 Orange Tip Butterflies and 1 Large White Butterfly.

Also Rabbits, and large hatches of Black Gnats. Large Bumblebees.

Also flora: Lots of Garlic Mustard showing throughout, Bluebells, Purple Vetch, Dandelion, Daisy, Lords and Ladies, Silverweed,Lesser Celandine, Marsh Marigold, Cuckoo Flower (May flower), Chickweed, Wood Anemone,Cowslips throughout, Coltsfoot, Butterbur.

From Borwick, to Priest Hutton via Coat Green to Burton (1200hrs - 1345hrs)
2 singing Garden Warblers (Borwick & Priest Hutton),
2 singing Willow Warbler
1 singing Chiffchaff (Borwick)
1 pair of Moorhen

Also 3 Peacock Butterflies, 4 Small Tortoishell Butterflies.

Also, Yellow Archangel (introduced), Herb Robert, Wood Sorrell, Barren Raspberry, Daisy, etc.

Please click here to see the great film (on youtube) made by Fraser of the Great Grey Shrike recently at Dalton, and can anyone guess who that guy is walking up Dalton at the beginning of the film!!! What a great job, and you can see the Shrike with prey and impaling Lizards etc...... (Thanks Fraser, and can't wait for Part 2)...

Sunday, 17 April 2011

Have you ever been confused by what may sound like a Warbler but is'nt?

Well just in case you have your not on your own, because at this time of the year Robins and Dunnocks take on a totally different song to what they preach at other times of the year. I often think they are rebellious to the arrival of the Blackcaps and Garden Warblers, and subsequently have decided that they want some of the action!!

Also at this time of the year the Nuthatch takes on a very ventril "trilling" call, and very strong for just a medium sized bird. From a distance it may even sound like you've got a Whimbrel close at hand!!

Sunday April 17th 2011 (0745hrs - 0845hrs and then 1115hrs to 1215hrs) Went past Drovers Way, and past "Hanging Hill" on the left hand side and under the aqueduct and just on approach to Moss Lane turned left on to the Hilderstone Road. Here I had a Willow Warbler calling near to the Railway Bridge, and also could hear a new Chiffchaff calling which was on the lane to Holme, quite near to the brand new Agricultural building. Also had a Swallow overhead going North. Garlic Mustard now showing all over the verges.....

Soon on the Hilderstone Road and before the farm I turned off right on to the bridleway which eventually leads on to the A6. Here just behind the farm is some woodlands, which also contain some mature conifers. From here I had another singing Willow Warbler and also a singing Blackcap.

A little further on and I disturbed two male Mallard which were down in the dykes. Also a Lapwing was flying about my head, obviously very agitated. I could see a sitting bird over in the field and also what I thought could well have been small chicks moving about! At this point also had another Willow Warbler in song. Also along here there was Bluebells, Stitchwort, Self Heal and White Dead Nettle. And a nice finish before I arrived at the A6 was a beautifully singing Skylark.

While walking in the verges of the A6 to reach Tarn Lane, I had another singing Willow Warbler. Then on reaching Cinderbarrow and Tarn Lane, I turned down eventually making my way back down to the village of Burton In Kendal. Just at the start of Tarn Lane I had another Meadow Pipit flying overhead on vismig, making two birds I had over the past couple of hours. At the start of Tarn Lane I had Bugle, Dogs Violet, Daisy, Dandelion, Wood Forget Me Not, a Orange Tip Butterfly. and some Stitchworts. Also had the usual singing Chiffchaff at Cinderbarrow.

On reaching the nearby railway bridge, a new Blackcap was singing his head off. A little further on and there was yet another Chiffchaff singing on the Canal, along with another 3 Willow Warblers in the close vicinity of the Canal.

The sitting Mute Swan on the Canal seemed happy enough, and I decided to do some sketching, when out of the corner of my eye, I saw some movement and got superb views of a exceptionally large Stoat bounding about on this side of the Canal. Watched for a minute or so before he decided to go obscure within the nearby undergrowth. A further Blackcap was calling from further along the canal on the Tewitfield side.

Further along Tarn Lane, I had yet another pair of Swallows heading North.

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Willow Warblers, Chiffchaffs and Blackcaps

(Found this well on Lancelot Clark Storth, this morning - please click over to enlarge)

0645hrs: A new Blackcap had arrived and the bird was singing at the bottom of Mowbray Drive/Thornleigh, Burton In Kendal.

0940hrs - 1110hrs - Slape Lane (Leading to Burton Fell), Burton In Kendal. Had 2 singing Willow Warblers whilst going along Slape. A Nuthatch calling from the wooded area near to "game crop", the bird was giving its slapping call which was something like "chiffchiff" "chiffchiff", a call associated at anytime of the year. Also another Blackcap to record near crossroad fences (near gamecrop). Checked out the Nuthatches breeding hole and both birds were present, one of the birds which I gathered to be on the lookout, gave off great vocal commotion when the other bird was just about to enter her nest hole and quickly diverted. I think it was a warning of perhaps my closeby presence. Later at this same site again I witnessed a Great Tit coming out of the hole, so wondering whether both species are for now sharing the same site. Whilst sat at the Curwen seat on Slape, a new Blackcap was closeby and singing from Lancelot Clark Storth.

1115hrs - 1140hrs Burton Fell. 2 singing Chiffchaffs - so where were the other 3 (had they moved on or where they being quiet?, 7 Willow Warblers singing at the bottom of the Fell, Also Bullfinch, and singing Goldcrest, One Green Woodpecker yaffling..

1140hrs-1248hrs in Lancelot Clark Storth Woodlands which go through to the back of Dalton Hamlet and then back to the Curwen Seat on Slape. First investigated a water well area which I had not seen before. Had 11 singing Willow Warblers throughout Lancelot, 4 Chiffchaffs (probably moved over from Burton!!), 3 new Blackcaps at various points. Also a Great Spotted Woodpecker drumming and primroses here and there. Nuthatch alarm trilling, just like the Whimbrel call. Also two male Bullfinches showing.

Friday, 15 April 2011

A New Tree Pipit arrived at Dalton Crags also Wheatear

(Please click over sketches to enlarge) From Dalton hamlet side of Dalton Road to Trig via the Crags (0945hrs to 1230hrs), on this side going up there where another three Willow Warblers whilst climbing up, then on reaching clearing area there was another four WWs and one Chiffchaff and one Blackcap. Went up through Dalton Crags (Whittington side) of Plain Quarry Car Park and there was a new Tree Pipit, singing and also displaying on territory. Walked through woods area and then up through deforested to the Trig, on way up there was the Tree Pipit which arrived last week who now seems to have got a mate. There is still at least a further pair of Tree Pipits to arrive! Had 3 Wheatears on the wall near to the Trig, the all looked like males, but two were in superb plumage. I took them to be European Wheatear, they looked of standard size and did not bear any signs of more upright stance as would the "Greenlands." Crossing over to the North West on migration was 2 Redpoll and 6 Meadow Pipits (all singles), plus there was a Mipit blogging party of 10 birds. Also there was at least four Willow Warblers, with two more singing close to the Trig Point. I came down after leaving the deforested and went past the charcoal burners towards Dalton Road, on way down and just past the burners I had a new Chiffchaff singing and also another new one singing quite close to the old "summer house" ruins, also a further four Willow Warblers in this area. Also Goldcrest singing. Also Wood Anemone, 2 Squirrels, and 2 Roe Deer. Not a bad morning!

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Peacocks on Hutton Roof

(Please click over sketch to enlarge)

At around 0915hrs had a quick look on the North Lundsfield Old Quarry site at Carnforth.

I had in song, 3 Blackcaps, 1 Chiffchaff, and approx 10 Willow Warblers.

Also there was good showing of: Bugle, Silverweed, Coltsfoot, Fresh Leaves of Yellow Flag, and Wood Forget Me Not.

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Tree Pipit and Hawfinch at Dalton plus Yellow Archangel in Arnside

Wednesday April 13th 2011. (0730hrs-0830hrs) Had a walk up from Plain Quarry to Trig point and back. Did have one singing Tree Pipit, half way up on the deforested side of Dalton, yet still none of the two paired Stonechats which must be lying low. On way back just after leaving the main Crags and coming into the small clearing area, there was a Hawfinch near the top of the large trees in front (this is where I had one about two weeks ago), its just before you start coming back down again to the Car Park.

I ommitted yesterday my brief walk up to Arnside Knott. I parked up on the road at the bottom which goes past the Arnside Cemetary and just a little further on. You can see the old Arnside Peel Tower on the left. Just here where I parked theres a very large colony of Yellow Archangel (Lamiastrum galeobdolon) probably of the subspecies argentatum (click over photo to enlarge).

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

No Shrike again, possibly moved on!!......

Tuesday April 12th 2011 (0800hrs-0930hrs)

No Shrike, No Tree Pipits calling, No Stonechat calling,

just the odd Mipit on territory and the good old faithful skylark.

Lots of Willow Warblers, 2 Chiffchaffs and 2 Blackcap.

Also Green Woodpeckers and Mistle Thrush

Here's a couple of photos from later on when I checked out the Toothwort near to White Moss at Hale. 1) Photo of todays Toothwort 2) Wood Anemone which carpetted the woodland.

Monday, 11 April 2011

No Shrike today and generally quiet, but did have Red Admiral

Monday April 11th 2011 (1300hrs - 1630hrs) Shrike not seen again today, check out all the usual places on Dalton (deforested), Trig and the Common, and down into Lancelot and parts of Burton Fell. Winds pretty strong, and no show either of territorial birds, Tree Pipits or Stonechat. Did have a single Red Admiral on Lancelot in the more sheltered area, and a male Orange Tip at Plain Quarry. Also just one party of 6 Meadow Pipits going through NW on migration. Photos of flowers seen as shown above: Top: Primrose, Bottom: Common Whitlowgrass - Please click over photos to enlarge.

Sunday, 10 April 2011

No Shrike today, but lots of Peacock Butterflies

Sunday April 10th 2011 (1400hrs-1530hrs) Plain Quarry to Trig and return. Shrike not seen today, everything so quiet, just the odd Meadow Pipit heard. Lots of Peacock butterflies about. Reports of Orange Tip at Plain Quarry.

Saturday, 9 April 2011

GG Shrike & Migration

(Please click over sketches to enlarge)

Its now 0800hrs and earlier I had my first returning Blackcap singing from the Hawthorn Bank (Vicarage Lane) Burton In Kendal. Also had an additional new Chiffchaff calling from the Church Bank area of Burton.

Sat 9th April 2011 (0800 to 1200hrs)

Shrike on show on various tree tops from the Dalton deforested (rotting wood piles) from middle up towards boundary wall before Trig. In the main on his favourite tree. Seen to catch prey (Lizard).

Also: A Blackcap has now arrived to the left hand side of the Plain Quarry car park.

Willow Warblers: 5 close to Car Park, 4 between Car Park and the first open area before you climb Crags. 7 in Crags on way up before clearing. 2 at clearing (deforested) and another 2 on top of Common near Trig. (20 singing birds)

also: 1 Chiffchaff near to Car Park.

and 1 Tree Pipit on territory just has you leave the Crags and Wooded area and start to ascend the deforested area it is within 50 yards on the left hand side (Coast side). There is definately one and possibly two..

Also on vismig whilst I was there: all North/North West Meadow Pipit: 34 (best party 3) Skylark: 1, Redpoll 4, Linnet 2.

Also think there are a pair of Linnet holding territory about 100 yards South of Trig.

Great Spotted Woodpecker drumming in wooded area close to car park, also Green Woodpecker yaffling at the end of the Crags just before leaving to the deforested area.

Also lots of Peacock Butterflies throughout, especially at the Plain Quarry Car Park. And very early, very pale Painted Lady Butterfly on the deforested side.

Kestrel local, 2 buzzards local, 2 Ravens local.

Met some great people who had travelled down from Newcastle and also Ian from Chorley...

Sketch below: 1) GG Shrike on deforested area of Dalton today 2) Scan of my todays diary, 3) Peacock Butterfly taken at Plain Quarry this morning, and 4) A photo of the deforested area of Dalton early this morning. (Please click on sketch or photo to enlarge)

Friday, 8 April 2011

Tree Pipit arrived back on Dalton 8th April 2011

(Please click over diary sketch to enlarge) Up at 0500hrs and heard Tawny Owl calling from Glebe Close/Vicarage Lane area of Burton In Kendal. Also noticed that a Swallow was back on territory yesterday at Green Dragon Farm, Burton In Kendal, and also that one has been back on territory at Russell Farm, Dalton, Burton since April 4th 2011.

(Fri April 8th 2011) (0900hrs-1100hrs) Shrike present at first in Dalton deforested (wood piles) near to boundary wall with Common. And then moved to farthest away hawthorn, East from Trig. Still there on leaving.

Also great to see first Tree Pipit returned and singing,in usual breeding area top end of Dalton deforested side - no displays yet...

Also Stonechat male on show on territory. 11 Willow Warblers from Car Park to end of Crags area. 1 Chiffchaff. Also: 33 Meadow Pipits North West during my watch 2hrs. Some Small Tortoishell in flight.

Went over to Shore Road (Hunting Hill) area of Carnforth from 1100hrs to 1200hrs. Did not have a single migrant. There was however 3 Swallows possible back on territory at Gallows Hall.

Also noticed that 3 Swallows are back on territory at Green Dragon Farm, Burton In Kendal.

Also: Ladys Mantle now showing at Plain Quarry.

Below is 1) Sketch from Plain Quarry to Dalton Crags Footpath 2) Forestry Workers at Dalton filling up the Charcoal Burners and 3) is Dalton (deforested) area today.