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Latest Bird News 28th December 2003
Updated 13th Novemer 2007


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28th December The groups post Christmas walk around Firbeck and Roche Abbey produced the following: A nice Kingfisher and 11 Tufted Duck at Firbeck Hall. 3 Wigeon were the highlight at Lingodell. Along East Field Lane, a Brambling went overhead, as did 2 Buzzard. In stubble 37 Skylark were flushed, with Marsh Tit in the woodland edge. 5 Teal were counted at Roche Abbey, with a Tawny Owl given away by a mob of Blackbirds. At Stone 15 Siskin were feeding in Alders. After the walk some of the group went on, to Langold Lake, which produced: Coot 32, Mallard 22, Tufted Duck 10, Great Crested Grebe 1, Black-headed Gull 176, Common Gull 3, 1 Buzzard, 3 Lesser Redpoll, and 8 Siskin. Again very poor. Carlton Lake held just 6 Tufted Duck with a negligible count of Coot and Moorhen. Finally Hewett Arms revealed 3 Mute Swan, 6 Coot and a Pink-footed Goose (fully winged and wary) amid the few Canada Geese.

26th December A Jack Snipe was the highlight at North Anston Pit Top today

21st December A blustery NAPT was fairly quiet, except for 10 Grey Partridge, female Green Woodpecker and 30 Lapwing. No Teal were located at Roche Abbey, just 17 Mallard (shooting in the area). Kings Wood corner was productive with 500 Woodpigeon, 14 Mistle Thrush and a mixed tit flock containing: 22 Long-tailed Tit, 8 Great Tit, 6 Blue Tit, 4 Goldcrest and 2 Marsh Tit. In stubble by East Field Lane were 12 Skylark, with 6 Yellowhammer and a Woodcock, overhead were 2 Buzzard. A quick wildfowl count was disappointing. At Langold Lake were 31 Coot, 40 Mallard, 8 Tufted Duck, 158 Black-headed Gulls and 2 Great Crested Grebe. Nearby Carlton lake held 4 Coot and 5 Heron. Brown Bailey's was equally quiet with 20 Coot, 2 Mallard, 1 Great Crested Grebe and 6 Tufted Duck. Wildfowl this winter are well down!!

12th December Some records from 3 water sites today. Hewett Arms -held 18 Mallard, 9 Coot, 9 Canada Geese, 1 Greylag Goose, 3 Mute Swan, an increasing 11 Cormorant and 3 Heron. At Brown Bailey's were: 2 Little Grebe, 16 Coot, 7 Tufted Duck, 3 Pochard (1m 2f) ,1 Great Crested Grebe and single Heron. At Carlton lake were: 6 Mallard,4 Coot, 15 Moorhen, 2 Great Crested Grebe and a pair Goosander.

8th December Hot off the press-a pair of Goosander at Carlton Lake today.

7th December At Kiveton Pit Top today were 18 Wigeon that flew west, 7 Reed Bunting, 4 Bullfinch, 200 Fieldfare, 50 Redwing, 12 Blackbird, an imm Sparrowhawk, 2 Willow Tit, 2 Snipe and 2 Siskin.

6th December Of Interest is a Leucistic (lacks proper pigment colour-blacks appear paler etc...) Dunnock at Turnerwood. It has white primary and secondary feathers, a white mantle and tail. It's head was uniform pale grey.

30th November At North Anston Pit Top were 4 Bullfinch, 15 Linnet, 6 Yellowhammer,Grey Wagtail, male & female Green Woodpecker,100 Fieldfare, 7 Herring Gull >south, 2 Great Black-backed Gulls >S, 65 Black-headed Gulls and 5 Common Gulls. The water levels continue to rise in the scrape.

29th November A walk from Kiveton Park Station to Turnerwood along the Chesterfield Canal produced the following 12 Wren, 36 Blackbird,18 Great Tit, 41 Blue Tit, 8 Robin, 37 Long-tailed Tit, 2 Marsh Tit, 6 Willow Tit, 2 Kingfisher, 9 Bullfinch, 15 Chaffinch, 4 Treecreeper, 2 Coal Tit, 4 Little Grebe, 16 Moorhen, 45 Fieldfare, 2 Jay, 8 Siskin, 14 Goldcrest , 2 Nuthatch, 2 WATER VOLE and at Axle Lane were 3500 Golden Plover and 7 Corn Bunting

24th November male Blackcap in gardens on Swinston Hill Road, feeding on apples (W .Slack).

22nd November A record of a Barn Owl over Oldcotes, from the Sandbeck area at dusk this evening, this a typical record for this species.

18th November A square wide wildfowl count today produced at Langold Lake -39 Mallard, 16 Tufted Duck, 24 Coot, 4 Great Crested Grebe, Lots of Siskin in split flocks probably c100 altogether, At Carlton Lake were 7 Mallard, 3 Coot, single Tufted Duck, a healthy 14 Moorhen, 2 Heron and 3 Cormorant fishing together in the lake, which flew off on arrival SE. Brown Bailey's held 15 Coot, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 5 Tufted Duck, and 2 Cormorant, possibly the ones from Langold Lake. At the Hewitt Arms Pond were 9 Mallard, 9 Coot, 2 Heron, 2 Mute Swan, a Little Grebe and 2 Cormorant .

16th November A walk from Kiveton to Kiveton Pit Top via the Chesterfield Canal produced Sparrowhawk and Teal between Kiveton and Norwood Tunnel, with an unseasonable Redshank at Tommy Flockton's Marsh. On Kiveton Pit Top were circa 150 Fieldfare, 30 Redwing, plus 2 Goldcrest and 2 Willow Tit and 3 Bullfinch.

15th November At Kiveton Pit Top 6 Goosander flew towards Harthill, with 50 Fieldfare, 20 Redwing, 3 Willow Tit., Grey Wagtail, Green Woodpecker, Sparrowhawk, Lesser Redpoll and Water Vole. The recent rainfall has started to fill up the new wader scrape at North Anston Pit Top, which held 2 Mallard.

9th November Generally another dull grey weekend, except for big numbers of Woodpigeon and Fieldfare moving through. 400 Fieldfare at Kiveton Pit Top, plus 29 Skylark, and 44 Lapwing at Dinnington Marsh. At North Anston Pit Top 570 Woodpigeon flew through in 2.5 hours (200 the largest flock), with 1620 Fieldfare (400 largest flock), these continued to move through all day. Also at NAPT were 3 Snipe and 9 Grey Partridge. Between 600-1000 Woodpigeon flew out of Kings Wood at lunchtime. A high of 3500 Golden Plover today at Axle Lane. By East Field Lane a small patch of stubble hid 10 Skylark, 22 Yellowhammer and 2 Marsh Tit in the nearby hedge.

2nd November A wet & breezy group walk along the Chesterfield Canal produced some interesting records including: 25+ Yellowhammer just off First Lane, 7 Marsh Tit, 5 Little Grebe, 2 Brambling, and 2 Kingfishers. A flying visit to NAPT to review the workings produced a Jack Snipe and 9 Grey Partridge, plus a good number of Fieldfare.

30th October North Anston Pit Top continues to produce modest numbers common birds, despite the ongoing reclamation works. A 3 hour wander produced 12 Robin, 80 Fieldfare, c1500 Woodpigeon (passing in good numbers), 12 Meadow Pipit, 10 Wren, 9 Grey Partridge, 6 Yellowhammer (all >S-unusual here), single Snipe and Cormorant.

29th October Further indication of the Jay influx were 6 recorded during a round of golf at Lindrick.

27th October A walk along the Chesterfield Canal was proved fruitful with the following recorded: 23 Blackbird (influx?), 14 Wren, 11 Moorhen, 7 Bullfinch, 22 Redwing, 61 Fieldfare , 12 Lesser Redpoll, 6 Siskin, 4 Brambling, 2 Marsh Tit, 7 Willow Tit, m & f Sparrowhawk, 6 Little Grebe, 12 Goldcrest, 22 Long-tailed Tit, and 2 Grey Wagtail.

26th October At Harry Crofts were c60 Yellowhammer on the hedges, with 20 Goldfinch, 5 Meadow Pipits and 7 Grey Partridge in the fields. By First Lane were a further 14 Grey Partridge and 12 Yellowhammer. In a members garden in Todwick there are a regular 15 Grey Partridge!

25th October A mini wildfowl count today produced the following: Langold Lake: 38 Mallard, 24 Coot, 29 Tufted Duck, 4 Great Crested Grebe, (2 in summer plumage), 53 Black-headed Gulls and 20 Siskin. At Carlton Lake were: 17 Moorhen, 4 Coot, 7 Tufted Duck and 1 Cormorant. Brown Bailey's produced: 12 Tufted Duck, 22 Coot, 1 Great Crested Grebe, and 2 Marsh Tit. Generally wildfowl numbers are very low, except for Tufted Duck numbers, which appear to be on the increase. As far as I know there has been just a single Gadwall recorded so far this autumn, at Langold Lake about 2 weeks ago.

24th October An incredible count of 53 Grey Partridge at Axle Lane today with 2000 Golden Plover

19th October Despite the easterly winds things remain fairly quiet around SK58. The strong winds keeping many birds down. Woodpigeon are picking up, with 75+ south in one group over NAPT. A small influx of Blackbird here, plus 3 Brambling. Quite a few Fieldfare south also. Just a few Meadow Pipit, as they quieten off. Small numbers of Lesser Redpoll and Siskin south also. Linnet numbers have increased with 75 at NAPT. On East Field Lane 450+ Starlings were noisily perched on wires, with 4 Lesser Redpoll over. From Kings Wood 114 Lapwing fed in fields, with c70 Redwing around and a constant stream of Fieldfare SW. 5 Buzzard from here also.

18th October A site meeting at North Anston Pit Top produced a Jack Snipe, much to the delight of the contractors.

16th October A 4 hour walk via Axle Lane and Chesterfield Canal produced the following highlights: 6 Corn Bunting at Axle Lane, plus 40 Greenfinch and circa 250 Feral Pigeon. Along First Lane were c40 Yellowhammer. The Chesterfield Canal produced 6 Marsh Tit, 3 Little Grebe, 4 Brambling, with 49 Fieldfare over Tommy Flockton's Marsh and a further 17 over Kiveton Pit Top.

14th October Despite the on going work at North Anston Pit Top, 46 species were noted in 2.5 hours this morning. Highlights included 5 Brambling north, a steady passage of Woodpigeon, Song Thrush, Skylark and Meadow Pipit plus 3 Jay east. Also noted were 2 Lesser Redpoll, 9 Grey Partridge and single Chiffchaff. At Tinkerhole Dike, the strong SE wind kept things down. However 18 Stock Dove were counted. At Roche Abbey 8 Teal were the highlight. Langold Lake held low wildfowl numbers with: 41 Mallard, 30 Coot, a modest 42 Tufted Duck and 4 Great Crested Grebe, 2 of which were in summer plumage and displaying!! 1000+ Corvids over Carlton Lake, with a lowly 15 Coot at Brown Bailey's, plus 2 Great Crested Grebe.

12th October A quieter day today, except for 33 Fieldfare SW over Axle Lane.

11th October A movement today with good numbers of migrants through the square. Kiveton Pit Top held: 5 Brambling, 7 Redwing, 3 Lesser Redpoll, an impressive 57 House Martin, a single Peregrine east and the first Fieldfare of the autumn (2 south), with an impressive 37 Skylark. Even more impressive are the thrush numbers at Tinkerhole Dike. Amid the 48 Blackbird were 16 Song Thrush, 5 Redwing, 3 Tree Sparrow, 3 Siskin, Lesser Redpoll and 3 Willow Tit. 2000 plus Golden Plover at Axle Lane this evening.

6th October Merlin still present at Axle Lane.

4th October First Redwing of the autumn over North Anston Pit Top, also Merlin through, which has since taken up residence at Axle Lane. Notable passage of Grey Wagtail with 7 over NAPT in 2 hours. Jays also on the move with 3 high south over NAPT. Brambling at Tinkerhole Dike, plus a very late Reed Warbler. A Little Owl has returned to Carr Hill, after an absence of several years. Wildfowl numbers remain low, with 22 Mallard at Langold Lake, plus 25 Coot, 12 Tufted Duck,and 4 Great Crested Grebe (3ad 1imm). Brown Bailey's fared little better with just 9 Coot, 5 Tufted Duck and single Great Crested Grebe.

3rd October Migration seems to have picked up this last few days. At Axle Lane today were 75 Skylark, 23 Meadow Pipit, 40 Linnet, 40 Greenfinch, an imm Peregrine east, 34 Pink-footed Geese typically south-east and 2 Mute Swan north, plus 4 Redwing south this morning. This evening a further 63 Pink-footed Geese south-east at 18:00.

2nd October What a difference a day makes! Things seem to moving though at last. 21 Coot and a male Wigeon today at Brown Bailey's. Hewett Arms held 10 Mallard, 8 Coot, Little Grebe and 5 Heron. Grange Farm was quite productive with 35 Tree Sparrows, and nearer Harthill, a flock of circa 700 Rooks, and 200 Starlings, plus 75 Linnets.

1st October Despite the easterly airflow not much has filtered in to SK58 yet. A through square bash failed to produce anything of note. Tinkerhole Dike held 2 Chiffchaff, with 4 House Martins south and Brambling. Roche Abbey revealed 3 Marsh Tits, single Chiffchaff, 14 Mallard and 2 Teal. A windy Carr Hill did produce 44 Golden Plover, 36 Lapwing and circa 100 Linnet. An as windy King Wood was quiet except for 7 distant Buzzard. Wildfowl numbers were low. Langold Lake held 33 Coot, with 3 on Carlton Lake and 11 at Hewett Arms. Mallard were evident with 40 at Langold Lake where 105 Canada Geese were counted. Here just 8 Tufted Duck were present with 5 down the road at Brown Bailey's. There are plenty of Great Crested Grebe around with 5 (4ads and 1 imm.) at Langold Lake and 4 ads at Brown Bailey's. A single female Ruddy Duck was the highlight at Carlton lake and 2500 Golden Plover at Axle Lane.

30th September Axle Lane held 1375 Golden Plover, with 22 Grey Partridge. There have been up to 50 here recently.

29th September Some movement today 16 Robins were counted at North Anston Pit Top, amid the regeneration of the site, which does create quite a bit of disturbance. Single Brambling through plus 4 Siskin. More evident were 29 Blackbird at Tinkerhole Dike. A further 12 Siskin south here, plus 4 Chiffchaff in the hedges and 10 Song Thrush, single Blackcap and one more Brambling. Back at Axle Lane 2000 Golden Plover were present.

27th September A further Osprey through Axle Lane, when one flew NW at 09:45-another one missed by Mr Clay!!

25th September Another Hobby through Axle Lane today, 2000 Golden Plover also.

22nd September Golden Plover numbers topped 4000 birds at Axle Lane today. Birds are obviously arriving en-masse.

21st September Passage seems to have picked up. Golden Plover numbers rose from 900 to 2483 birds today, alas no sign of American Golden Plover found at Old Moor RSPB Reserve. Axle Lane stole the limelight today. The usual 6 Herons were present, with Skylark on the move (small groups of 6-12 birds). Nice to see were 12 Grey Partridge (have been up to 40+ birds), Greylag Goose south and 3 Wheatears in the field. Also through early morning was a Greenshank. In the afternoon a single Wheatear remained, with imm Osprey through low to the SE at 17:00 (thanks to Andy Deighton for this report).

16th September Passage was a bit slow today. Birds were however moving. 11 Siskin flew S over NAPT, with a further 12 S over Kings Wood. 2 Snipe were feeding in a ditch at NAPT, with a count of 11 Robin here. There may have been an influx of Jays into the area. 3 at NAPT is highly unusual, with a further 3 over Kings Wood. At Kings Wood a total of 11 Buzzard were airborne, some very high indeed, on the thermals generated by the unseasonable warm spell.

14th September 5 Chiffchaff at NAPT this morning. A total of 10 Stock Dove here also. A single flock of 36 Linnet in the west quadrant. Single Yellow Wagtail south here and a late Turtle Dove. 2 Siskin in Alders were the first at NAPT this autumn. 5 Chiffchaff at Tinkerhole Dike were clearly passage birds, as was a single Spotted Flycatcher. Roche Abbey held just 2 Teal. Perhaps the best period for a while was at Carlton Lake with incredible raptor observations over an hour and half period. 3 Buzzard flew high south calling, with 2 further birds over Carlton Wood. Over the wood and lake were 3 Hobbies, with at least 1ad and 1 imm. these hunted for over an hour and a half , and on occasion game excellent views. A Sparrowhawk muscled in the action, but the limelight was stolen with a male Peregrine north. All this raptor activity amid a constant stream of Swallow and House Martins moving south, in small groups of 10-50 birds.

13th September 5 Siskin S over Axle Lane are the first of the autumn.

7th September 4 Chiffchaff at Tinkerhole Dike were clearly passage birds. A total of 12 Stock Dove were counted here. Roche Abbey held 7 Teal, with a further bird at Carlton Lake. Wildfowl numbers are still low. 39 Mallard were counted at Langold Lake, with 24 at Hewett Arms Pond. Coot reached 32 at Langold Lake, 8 at Carlton Lake and 5 at Brown Bailey's. Tufted Duck numbers remain low, with 5 at Langold Lake, 10 at Carlton Lake and just 4 at Brown Bailey's. At Langold Lake 5 Great Crested Grebe were counted inc. 1 stripier young bird. Single Yellow Wagtail south here. 2 pairs of Sand Martin were still visiting nest holes at Brown Bailey's, with 9 passage birds at Hewett Arms. Single Buzzard here also. A report of imm Hobby chasing finches at Axle Lane this afternoon.

6th September A noisy trip to North Anston Pit (plant equipment contouring the slope, and digging our wader scrape), was birdwise, fairly quiet. Not a lot was moving. Highlight was Tree Pipit south. A single Turtle Dove was located at Cramfit. A nice charm of 60 Goldfinches brightened things up, as did family party(s) of 10 Bullfinches. Single Swift over and 2 passage Sedge Warblers also. A brief visit to the Hobby wood failed to locate an active nest. It's was suspected that young in the nest would have fledged by now. 70 House Martin at Dinnington Sewage Works.

5th September Still about 200-250 Golden Plover at Axle, plus Tree Pipit through and modest numbers of House Martins, Swallows and Meadow Pipits. Single female Wheatear here. Highlight was juv. Hobby through.

31st August A quick trip to North Anston Pit Top produced little, except confirmed breeding of Turtle Dove, and a steady passage of hirundines. Work is well underway at the wader scrape area, so the site is very much disturbed. We will see how this affects our records. On a positive note we have a regular Hobby feeding near a wood within the square. It has on several occasions been seen patrolling an area, and carrying off food. Thanks to Gordon Fisher and John Layden for the information and help. We will investigate and try to confirm the groups first proven breeding Hobby. We have suspected breeding for the past couple years at differing sites within the square.

26th August Golden Plover numbers are rising nicely, with 250 today, plus 3 juv. Corn Bunting and single female Wheatear. A family of Swallows still have recently v. young Swallows @ Wigthorpehatched young in the nest at Wigthorpe (picture courtesy of Mike Murphy)

25th August 2 female Wheatear at Axle Lane today, plus 200 Golden Plover.

23rd August A walk along the Chesterfield Canal produced many Little Grebe, inc. 2ad's and 4 juv, 2ad's and 2 juv, plus 2 imm. birds. At Axle Lane 98 Golden Plover were counted.

22nd August Highlights today were a Turtle Dove at Tommy Flockton's Marsh

18th August 2 juv. Whinchat at Axle Lane today, with 4 Yellow Wagtail.

17th August No sign of Barn Owl near Thwaite House Farm still. At Axle Lane Golden Plover numbered 36 birds, with 24 Corn Bunting and Tree Pipit south.

16th August Little Owl at Carr.

11th August The first Wheatear of the autumn, a juv. at Axle Lane, also 3 Whinchat by the ponds & imm. Peregrine in the evening.

9th August The surprisingly grim weather (very foggy), made North Anston Pit Top a very quiet place this morning. Few species were recorded. The most notable were a covey of 7 Grey Partridge, 2 Turtle Dove, 2 pairs of Reed Warbler, and 2 obliging Lesser Whitethroat. Another Barn Owlless night tonight, but Little Owl and the 4-5 Tawny Owls present.

8th August Now 2 Whinchat at Axle Lane this morning. No sign of the Peregrine, but a pigeon corpse that appears to be a Peregrine kill. No sign either of the Barn Owl tonight, but at least 4-5 Tawny Owls in the area.

7th August A bumper day today. Axle Lane held 9 Golden Plover, the first returning Whinchat, plus imm. Peregrine. Barn Owl also perched on a post for 10 mins near Thwaite House Farm this evening at 22:00.

6th August 2 Golden Plover at Axle Lane today.

3rd August Highlight today were 3 Common Tern (1ad. and 2 imm) at Axle Lane.

2nd August A walk along the Chesterfield proved very fruitful, with quite a few warblers noted. Highlights include some useful counts; 31 Moorhen, 3 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 6 Bullfinch, plus 10 Little Grebe including a nest containing 2 small young. At Turnerwood a pair of Mute Swan had 2 imm, whilst a pair at Shireoaks had 3 young, with 100 Lapwing nearby.

31st July Another fairly quiet July morning around Kings Wood. Notable passage of hirundines though with 50 House Martin over plus 70+ Swift. Just a couple of Buzzard in the air and a constant stream of Lesser Black-backed Gulls. Marsh Tit calling from Kings Wood. Carlton Lake was also quiet. Just a single Ruddy Duck amongst the multitude of Canada Geese. 6 Moorhen included the totally albino bird.

27th July North Anston Pit Top was quite lively this morning. Hirundines and swifts are clearly departing. A single Sand Martin flew S (unusual here), with 117 Swift south in small parties of 4-50. Also kicking around were a minimum of 75 House Martins. Interestingly a single group of Blackbirds consisted of 21 birds, feeding in damp grass near Anston Greenlands school. The late arriving Reed Warblers appear to be feeding young. 2 Common Terns flew south over Cramfit, also here was the pair of Sedge Warbler. An 90 min stint at Kings Wood was worthwhile, with a sizeable party of tits (flocking already), plus 2 Marsh Tits calling loudly. 50 Black-headed Gulls moved S also, with 30 Lapwing NE, plus a Cormorant that appeared to land at Sandbeck. Just 3 Buzzard were noted. Highlight of the morning here was a single Crossbill heard flying S over the wood. Carlton was a little disappointing, with single female Ruddy Duck, 4 Moorhen (the albino bird was seen yesterday), plus a female Tufted Duck with 3 juv's. At Hewett Arms Pond a female Tufted Duck here had 7 juv's, also present was a single Great Crested Grebe.

22nd July A stint at Kings Wood corner produced a fair count of Buzzard (for the time of year). 7 were counted, with presumably several fledged young birds. Other raptors included 2 Sparrowhawks and 2 Kestrels. A steady stream of Lesser Black-backed Gulls moved S also. A vocal Marsh Tit was also observed. At nearby Penny Hill, 150 Swift were hawking insects. Carlton Lake held 88 Canada Geese, plus a pair of Ruddy Duck.

19th July Birds are starting to move through the area. The first Whinchat of the autumn was recorded this morning at Axle Lane

17th July Highlight of the week was a single Quail calling at East Field Lane, near the picnic site at 10:30, with Yellow Wagtail present also. Highlights at Carlton Lake was a good mix of Hirundines, plus a confiding Common Tern. Returning Gulls were noted at Owday Lane when the first ad. Common Gulls (2) were noted in a group of 11 very gingery Black-headed Gulls. Brown Bailey's held 10 ad. Coot and 9 juv's, plus a family party of Little Grebe. From Kings Wood corner was a single Buzzard, but 200+ Swift.

15th July A quick taz around the square produced a few interesting records. Langold Lake held many ad. and juv. Coot, with 50+ ad. and juv. Canada Geese. Also present were Grey Wagtail, 50+ Swift, 3ad. and 1imm. Great Crested Grebe. Carlton Lake held a pair of Ruddy Duck (more must be hidden away nesting). Brown Bailey's held a meagre 13 Sand Martins.

13th July Another Gropper, this time reeling at Tommy Flockton's Marsh at 09:15.

12th July Apologies for not updating this page sooner. I've been at work, plus there ain't been much about! Highlights today include this very approachable juv. Cuckoo, Front view, juv Cuckoo Mick ClayBack view, juv Cuckoo Mick ClayClose-up juv Cuckoo Mick Clay which has spent a week on the wall at Axle Lane. Thanks to Mick Clay for the pictures. An influx of Grasshopper Warblers appears to have taken place, with several records of reeling birds, which were not present before. A single reeling at the traditional site of Little Moor, was first heard this evening, despite several visits over the spring and summer.

29th June It appears that birds are still moving into/ through SK58. The highlight of a 3 hour stint at North Anston Pit Top revealed 3 Reed Warbler. At least 2 made a pair, with a 3rd several hundred metres away. A total of 46 species were counted here this morning, other notables included 9 Whitethroat, 6 male Reed Bunting, 5 Turtle Dove, a Sedge Warbler, a family party of Kestrels and a very lost looking Treecreeper trying to cling on to the central stem of a short Gorse bush in the open!

A single Spotted Flycatcher was located in Carlton Church yard. The Great Crested Grebe remains at Carlton Lake, this presumably the other adult from Brown Bailey's. Also here were the now resident Ruddy Duck (3m 1f). The semi-resident pair of Shelduck were also visible. More noteworthy were the 150 Swift over the lake, plus the albino Moorhen, which is somewhat striking. A brief stint at Kings Wood corner was a non starter, with very little noted (just 2 Buzzard). Perhaps the most startling record of the month was the annual count of Sand Martin nests at Brown Bailey's. Just 13 occupied nests were counted, this the lowest count for 9 years.

22nd June Our 2 pairs of Ringed Plovers are thought to be feeding juv's at a site within the square. At Dinnington Marsh 3 Sedge Warblers were in song, also recorded were 3 juv Kestrels, 2 family parties of Willow Tits, 4 Whitethroat, 12 Willow Warbler and a Cockatiel-anyone lost one?

16th June The quiet period continues, with little passage noted locally. At Carlton Lake the Ruddy Duck remain with 4 males and a female noted, at nearby Wigthorpe Hill a Little Owl perched on road sign. Spotted Flycatchers appear to have arrived in dribs and drabs, with 2 birds at 2 locations within Anston Stones Wood, with a further bird in the traditional site of Carlton Church yard.

15th June A second pair of Little Ringed Plovers in the square have successfully bred with adults and 2 juv's noted today.

11th June Just a single juv Long-eared Owl calling from one location this evening. It's suspected the other juv's are in the vicinity.

9th June Sedge Warbler still at Booths, Axle Lane along with 2 Whitethroat, 3 Reed Bunting with a Great Spotted Woodpecker feeding 2 juvsTurtle Dove by Brian Chambers. A surprise in a Todwick garden was this Turtle Dove muscling in on the Woodpigeons action!

7th June Three hours on North Anston Pit Top proved fruitful this morning with Hobby south at 06:15. Kingfisher was located at Cramfit Pond along with 2 Turtle Dove. A reeling Grasshopper Warbler showed well from the Church Lane entrance. Another brief stint at Kings Wood corner again produced calling Hawfinch and Marsh Tit. Raptors were thin on the ground with single Buzzard and Sparrowhawk.

6th June At a Little Ringed Plover site confusion reigns. The nest with 4 eggs that were in a day or two of hatching is empty. The eggs have gone and so have the adults. It is thought perhaps a predator had taken the eggs, or recently hatched young?

5th June At the Woodlark site 2 pairs are thought to be nesting, one pair almost certainly have young already. Through the site was a Hobby south-west.

3rd June A brief stint at Kings Wood corner produced a procession of Great Spotted Woodpecker, too and fro from and to Kings Wood. 5 Buzzard were noted as was calling Hawfinch. Supplementing the raptors were 2 male Sparrowhawk. The regular day-calling Tawny Owl was also heard. A Common Tern flew east over Harry Crofts that evening, with Grasshopper Warbler at Stiffs on the Chesterfield Canal and Turtle Dove at Anston Grange. Interestingly 45 Lesser Black-backed Gulls flew east.

31st May At Kings Wood Corner today were 2 Hawfinch, 3 Buzzard,1 Sparrowhawk and Marsh Tit. In Windmill Hill Wood was a Tawny Owl and Juv plus a Great Spotted Woodpecker with juvs.

29th May The Woodlark continue to entertain with their lovely singing, Woodlark by Brian Chambersit was however fairly quiet elsewhere. Langold Lake held the same wildfowl as the previous day, plus a male Ruddy Duck, probably from Carlton Lake. Carlton Lake itself was quiet except for 1 male and 2 female Ruddy Duck, and a few hirundines, plus Sedge Warbler and Whitethroat.

28th May A quick taz around the square was a fairly low key affair. Langold Lake produced 36 Mallard incl. 22 ad and 14 juv's, plus 56 ad Canada Geese with 25 juv's, 7 Tufted Duck and a pair of Mute Swan. Carlton Lake fared little better with Sedge Warbler the only really noteworthy bird. Kings Wood Corner produced vocal Hawfinch, 2 Sparrowhawk and 2 Kestrel. The highlight were 4 Buzzard.

27th May A very late male Wheatear at Axle Lane this morning.

24th May An early start for both teams in Kings Wood produced Hawfinch and Marsh Tit plus a host of woodland species. The Woodlark just outside the square were counted (it is for a good cause, and anyhow they can just about be heard from the boundary). Surprise finds were a imm Great Black-backed Gull, this one of the latest recorded, plus 4 Oystercatcher and pair of Shelduck at Carlton Lake were a welcome bonus. North Anston Pit Top appears to be the only regular spot for Turtle Dove this year. Kingfisher, Ringed and Little Ringed Plover were ticked locally, while a single Spotted Flycatcher eluded one team completely. Little Owl was located at Wallingwells with Grasshopper Warbler still reeling at Stiff's on the Chesterfield Canal.

23rd May The annual sponsored bird race always throws up some goodies, and this was no exception, with 4 pairs of eyes in the field for 20 hours, it's not really surprising. Redshank and Snipe were vocal at Brampton Common. Unexpected were a pair of Gadwall at Tommy Flockton's Marsh. Both local Long-eared Owl sites came up trumps with an adult showing well at dusk, and 3 juv's at another site calling continuously.

19th May Very disappointingly it appears that just 6 Sand Martin have returned to Brown Bailey's so far this spring. Strange because most other hirundines and swifts seem to have returned in modest numbers

18th May Little happening in the wet and windy conditions. From Kings Wood were 5 Buzzard, single Hawfinch, 2 Sparrowhawk and 300+ Swift. At a site in the square Little Ringed Plover continue to incubate 4 eggs. However just off our eastern border a pair(s) of Woodlark are regularly singing, and appear to be breeding.

17th May Female Wheatear again at Axle, plus 6 pairs of Lapwing, 6 pairs of Corn Bunting, a Common Tern on the ponds and Sedge Warbler

13th May Just a female Wheatear through Axle Lane this morning.

12th May A relatively quiet week-A trip to Carlton Lake produced 4m and 3 f Ruddy Duck, plus a pair of Shelduck.

10th May A Brown Bailey's the 2ad and 3 juv. Great Crested Grebe remain, along with 17 Tufted Duck, which appear to be doing nothing breeding wise. A male Ruddy Duck was displaying to a Moorhen, which showed no appreciation at all. At Tommy Flockton's Marsh 10 Lapwing included 2 juv birds, also here were Ringed Plover and Little Ringed Plover. Perhaps the most unusual record of the month was a female Stonechat at Kiveton Pit Top today. A very late bird indeed. Garden Warbler seem to be arriving slowly into the square, singles along the Chesterfield Canal today

9th May A wander around North Anston Pit Top first thing was quite rewarding: 17 Wren was a high count, although 1 Turtle Dove was a low count. At least 2 Sedge Warbler were seen and heard along Cramfit Brook. At Dinnington Sewage Works 50 House Martin were accompanied by 20 Swift and 10 Swallow. A 4 hour stint at Kings Wood Corner was well worth the effort with several Buzzard, but the stars were a wing tagged Red Kite which flew around for about half an hour, 2 Hawfinch were also seen and heard here. A male Peregrine flew along the edge of Sandbeck and landed on the pylon by Maltby Colliery, earlier it was seen at Thornbury Hill, along with a Crossbill, which couldn't be relocated at Firbeck. What was that bird doing in the square in May????

8th May The BTO's Woodcock Survey takes place at 2 locations in the square this year. Near Thornbury Hill we had 14 contacts of roding birds in 1 hour, as well as stunning views of a feeding Badger.

7th May Highlights today were a singing Wood Warbler in Kings Wood and a Honey Buzzard over one observers house!!!. At Slade Hills a Curlew was heard. 3 Cuckoo at Dinnington Marsh this evening, plus a 30 sec. view of the Short-eared Owl at 18:30.

6th May An evening visit to Dinnington Marsh revealed the Short-eared Owl again appearing briefly after 18:00, plus drumming Snipe, 2 Lesser Whitethroat and reeling Grasshopper Warbler again in the same spot.

5th May Single Little Ringed Plover at Kiveton Pit Top today. Just 3 Tree Sparrow at Grange Farm, plus single male Wheatear and a Corn Bunting. By Kings Wood were 300 Swift. Dinnington Marsh eventually yielded the Short-eared Owl and good views of reeling Grasshopper Warbler. The owl becoming absent for longer periods of time.

4th May No sign of the Short-eared Owl tonight, but 2 Cuckoo and Snipe still at Dinnington Marsh.

3rd May Single Spotted Flycatcher in Anston Stones Wood.

2nd May The Short-eared Owl showed exceptionally well again this evening at Dinnington Marsh-from 17:55

1st May A somewhat unexpected record of a Short-eared Owl, regularly hunting by Dinnington Marsh from circa 18:00 each evening, also 2 Cuckoo here. Also 1m and 2 f Wheatear, 4 Redshank and a Snipe, plus 3 Lapwing with young at Brampton Common. At Booth's, Todwick there were 5 Whitethroat, 2 Willow Tit and a Sedge Warbler. Nearby on Axle Lane ponds were 2 Common Tern.

30th April A pair of Little Ringed Plover located at Tommy Flockton's Marsh today.

29th April A single female Wheatear present all day at Axle Lane.

27th April A day in the square didn't produce anything exceptional, but did yield some useful records. 8 Whitethroat were counted at North Anston Pit Top. Also here were the first Turtle Dove of the spring and Lesser Whitethroat, plus 200 House Martin over the sewage works. Roche Abbey held little except for a pair of Shelduck, nearby 4 Buzzard were observed from Kings Wood. There seems to be an influx of Greylag Geese, with 6 at Langold Lake and a further 7 at Carlton Lake. Langold Lake also held 1 pair of Mute Swan, 13 Coot, 13 Mallard, 2 pairs of Great Crested Grebe, with a single juv. Carlton Lake revealed 8 Ruddy Duck-5 males and 3 females. Brown Bailey's produced 17 Tufted Duck, a Little Grebe (no doubt the other bird was in the reeds) and a pair of Great Crested Grebe with 3 stripier juvs. Surprisingly there were no Sand Martin present!

26th April 2 Swift north and a Buzzard south over Axle Lane with 2 Common Tern on the ponds there plus 2 Sedge Warbler. At Stiffs, by the Chesterfield Canal a Grasshopper Warbler was reeling.

22nd April A Cuckoo this morning at Kiveton Pit Top.

21st April News from our friends in Rotherham-a survey visit into our area produced a Cuckoo near Woodsetts, plus all three woodpeckers around Owday. Thanks to George Shentall for this info.

20th April At Tommy Flockton's Marsh on the square bash were 4 Redshank, 2 Little Ringed Plover and 2 Ringed Plover, while nearby Kiveton Pit held a Kingfisher, 2 male and a female Wheatear, plus 4 Grey Partridge. In Anston Stones Wood were 4 Blackcap. Brown Bailey's held 2 pairs of Ruddy Duck. The pair of Great Crested Grebe had 3 young. Carlton Lake held 5 male and 3 female Ruddy Duck, a late male Gadwall. Hodsock produced 20+ Fieldfare. Nearby Langold Lake produced 2 Mute Swan and 2 pairs of sitting Great Crested Grebe. At least 10 House Martin were circling around, along with 6 Swallow. Not a bad mornings work fellas!

18th April By the Chesterfield Canal, near Tommy Flockton's Marsh-1 Whitethroat, 1 Green Woodpecker, 2 Treecreeper and 8 Bullfinch. At Tommy Flockton's Marsh itself were 2 Little Ringed Plover and 2 Redshank.

17th April First Whitethroat of the spring-at Todwick

15th April Todays highlights were a male Peregrine attempting to take a Woodpigeon, also Swallow and male Yellow Wagtail through Axle Lane.

12th April Migrants are coming through now in modest number. Today at Axle Lane were 4m and 1 f Wheatear, plus single Swallow through at teatime. Nearby at Kiveton Pit Top 2 Redshank and 3 Willow Warbler were noted.

11th April A brief teatime walk along the Chesterfield Canal produced Lesser Spotted Woodpecker -about 1/4 mile from Kiveton -heard and seen, a male Blackcap plus 6 Chiffchaff, 100 Fieldfare, 12 Redwing, 3 Marsh Tit and 2 Little Grebe.

10th April Several active members spent a fruitful 5 days birding in the Scottish Highlands-as a result we've had few records. However today around Kiveton Pit Top were Snipe, Kingfisher, 4 Reed Bunting and 2 Willow Warbler. On the short stretch of the canal between Norwood Tunnel and Kiveton were singing Blackcap and 7 Chiffchaff.

30th March A group walk along the Chesterfield Canal produced 41 Fieldfare N, 9 Song Thrush, 17 Chiffchaff, 5 Nuthatch and 4 Little Grebe. A Kingfisher flew down near Turnerwood, with a female Wheatear in a paddock by La Farge quarry.

29th March Our first Willow Warbler this morning-at Kiveton Pit Top. A female Long-eared Owl was calling at a favoured site this evening at 23:45.

26th March A second Wheatear, again a male, and again found at Loscar.

24th March At Tommy Flockton's Marsh today were 2 Little Grebe, 6 Teal and 2 Redshank. On nearby Kiveton Pit Top 2 Ringed Plover remained, with Jack Snipe in the dike, plus 18 Skylark and 3 Meadow Pipit.

22nd March Tommy Flockton's Marsh maintained form today with single Little Grebe, but the highlight was the 29 Corn Bunting on the overhead wires. North Anston Pit Top held 12 singing Skylark, 5 Chiffchaff, 23 Redwing and 5 Fieldfare flying south-east!, as well as 5 Teal, which are unusual here. A single Jack Snipe was flushed from Cramfit Pond. Kings Wood produced a Tawny Owl calling at 11:00, and 2 calling Hawfinch. In the area 4 Buzzard were soaring.

21st March 6 Teal, 4 Gadwall, 7 Lapwing and 3 Redshank at Tommy Flockton's Marsh today. A pair of Ringed Plover have returned to Kiveton Pit Top. At Grange Farm the highlight was 28 Pied Wagtails. Carlton Lake held 67 Canada Geese, 1 Great Crested Grebe and 5 Ruddy Duck (3m 2f). On Liquorice Lane (south of Carlton-in-Lindrick), a field held 25 Pied Wagtails.

20th March An evening visit to Dinnington Marsh produced 4 Snipe and roding Woodcock.

19th March Migrants are beginning to trickle in. The first Wheatear of the year was found in fields at Loscar, this being pretty early. On Tuesday the first (11th) Little Ringed Plover was found at a local pit top This the earliest ever recorded by the group.

18th March 3 Redshank were present at Tommy Flockton's Marsh this morning, with 2 Little Grebe.

16th March A good day in the field. At North Anston Pit Top today were 12 Wren, 15 Dunnock, as well as a Greylag Goose N, female Brambling and a Chiffchaff, with a further 2 Chiffchaff at Roche Abbey. At Tommy Flockton's Marsh 2 Redshank were noted, while a Little Owl called at Grange Farm. An hour stint at Kings Wood corner revealed 3 Buzzard in the hazy sunlight, as well as a stunning Hawfinch. Round the corner at Roche Abbey 2 Chiffchaff were heard, with 2 pairs of Teal on the pond. Carlton Lake revealed 2 pairs of Goosander sat on the bankside, plus a male Ruddy Duck. At a site in the square a male Goshawk flew briefly.

13th March An excellent record of 27 Whooper Swans north over S. Anston.

6th March A four hour stint at Kings Wood Corner today revealed 45 Chaffinch feeding in cut Maize game cover, with a max. of 10 Buzzard at any one time, these were thermaling, and in active display. A good selection of passerines were noted. The highlight a single Hawfinch. Most unusual record were 14 Cormorant circling the east side of Sandbeck Hall.

2nd March Tommy Flockton's Marsh just gets better. This morning (pre-dog walkers!) it held an amazing 11 Wigeon (square record?!), 26 Gadwall, 9 Teal and a Little Grebe. Elsewhere 12 Buzzard were counted in the square. 2000 Black-headed Gull were estimated by Round Wood, near the SE border, SE of Carlton off Red Lane. Also here were 17 Corn Bunting and 3 Yellowhammer.

1st March Wildfowl hit the headlines at Tommy Flockton's Marsh with 32 Gadwall, 11 Teal and 10 Mallard. Hewett Arms Pond held 5 Cormorant and 3 Heron. Nearby Shireoaks Marina produced 25 Meadow Pipit, 20 Linnet and 20 Skylark on the reclaimed spoil heap behind the marina. At North Anston Pit Top highlights this morning were a pair of Kingfisher and a Water Rail. A max. of 12 Skylark were counted.

26th February The highlights today were a displaying male Goshawk, along with 5 Buzzards and a Sparrowhawk.

24th February Tommy Flockton's Marsh hogged the limelight with a good variety of wildfowl; including 3 Wigeon (1m, 1f and an imm), 7 Gadwall, 11 Teal and 8 Mallard.

23rd February At Carlton Lake today were 2 pairs of Goosander, an amazing 22 Moorhen, 2 Teal and 4 Stock Dove. At Langold Lake were a pair of Grey Wagtail, 2m and 1f Gadwall, plus a female Pochard-the highlight was a brief view of Water Rail.

22nd February Only the second wintering record of Blackcap so far this winter, with a pair in Woodsetts gardens

16th February A grey cold day, but 6 hours in the field produced a healthy number of woodland species in Kings Wood. Several Great Spotted Woodpeckers were bettered by brief views of a single Lesser Spotted Woodpecker. Plenty of Nuthatch were outnumbered by at least 6 Marsh Tits, with good numbers of commoner tits. 3 Buzzard put in an early morning appearance. Wildfowl numbers are very low The highlights at Firbeck Hall were a single Pochard and 12 Tufted Duck. Langold Lake fared little better with a miserly 28 Coot, 23 Mallard, 28 Tufted Duck, a pair of Great Crested Grebes and a pair of Gadwall. Carlton Lake was better with a Kingfisher plus 3 male and 2 female Goosander. The goose flock at Hewett Arms pond attracted a further Greylag Goose. A brief search at Gateford failed to produce any Waxwing.

15th February Skeins of Pink-footed Geese through today (no number), not surprising given the glorious weather. In Moses Seat Wood a Lesser Spotted Woodpecker was heard. Axle Lane holds about 2000 Golden Plover at the moment.

14th February The only wintering Blackcap we have heard of was around the 'Little Mester' pub, N. Anston today.

10th February A late report of a Merlin through Axle Lane today.

7th February Today at Brown Bailey's 15 Coot, 11 Tufted Duck, a pair of Great Crested Grebe and 4 Canada Geese. At nearby Hewett Arms pond 13 Canada Geese, 3 Heron, 4 Mallard, 40 Black-headed Gulls, 13 Coot, 2 Gadwall and 8 Cormorant.

6th February Pink-footed Geese are on the move with skeins of 28 & 70 west over S. Anston.

3rd February Very srong winds and heavy snow showers did not bode well, North Anston Pit Top was quiet oin the extreme conditions. The only birds of note were several single Siskin. In nearby Netherthorpe Wood at least 15 Brambling were active. Some moulting nicely.Langold Lake held 38 Mallard, 35 Coot, 18 Tufted Duck, 2 Gadwall and single Great Crested Grebe. Carlton Lake was quiet save for 21 Moorhen.The wildfowl from the previous day having moved on. .

2nd February Wildfowl are on the move today. A pair of Great Crested Grebe have returned again to Brown Bailey's, also present was Little Grebe. Carlton Lake held 3 male and a female Goosander, with a male Ruddy Duck also present. At nearby Langold Lake 5 Gadwall were the highlight.

30th January At Carlton Lake today-3 Goosander (2m, 1f), female Shoveler and 2 Cormorants. Also Little Owl at Brookhouse Farm, Brookhouse

24th January The Waxwings have been relocated, feeding from trees (catching insects) at the old Shireoaks colliery tip. Presumably these are the Gateford birds.

23rd January The fine weather continues, encouraging raptors to take to the air. At Kings Wood Sparrowhawk were noted displaying, with 7 Buzzard from there, with a further 13 Buzzard at Thornbury Hill. No sign of any Waxwing today at Gateford, with few berries remaining, although Linnet and Siskin were noted over the estate. Just a single Cormorant at Hewett Arms pond today.

22nd January The fine weather of the past couple of days encouraged Pink-footed Geese to move, with 60 W over S. Anston. 2-4 Waxwing were still present near the roundabout at the N end of Ashes Park, by Eddison Park Ave., although the berries are going fast. Near St Johns (between Throapham & Laughton) a Barn Owl was reported, also 6 Tree Sparrow.

14th January Following a Yorkshire-wide influx of Waxwing-4 were located by Ashes Park Ave. near its junction with Beaufort Way at Gateford.

12th January Several interesting records today. The Brambling at Netherthorpe woodland reached 2 pairs today. Nearby at Axle Lane a Buzzard flew over (unusual here). Of note was a Peregrine, between Throapham and Oldcotes, at Penny Hill. The probable male was flying in the direction of Langold Lake.

10th January The Brambling (3) have again returned to the small woodland off Netherthorpe Way (N. Anston). They have been present since the 3rd.

5th January A full day in the field produced some useful records. The big freeze seems to have moved on several long-stayers. At North Anston Pit Top a modest movement of Woodpigeons was noted, with 371 counted S. Although all the Jack Snipe had moved on. At nearby Kings Wood a further 470 Woodpigeon were counted. Dinnington Sewage Works held 25 Magpie-not the 50 of previous winters. Taking advantage of the fine weather Buzzards were airborne. A single over NAPT is unusual here, a singe over Kings Wood and an impressive 5 at Slade Hills with a further 2 at Thornbury Hill. A quick wildfowl count was generally poor, given the cool conditions that normally bring wildfowl in. At Langold Lake were: 52 Coot, with 11 at Brown Bailey's, 37 Mallard, 14 more at Brown Bailey's, 28 Tufted Duck and 14 at Brown Bailey's. Also present were 3 Gadwall with a further pair at Hewett Arms Pond, although no Cormorant were present. Back at Langold Lake 218 Black-headed Gull were counted along with 37 Siskin. Marsh Tit have become more vocal with birds noted at Tinkerhole Dike, Roche Abbey and Kings Wood. At Dinnington Marsh 14 Snipe were a welcome sight, as were 12 Yellowhammer and a Woodcock.

1st January Kicking off the new year in style with an influx of 22 Blackbird at North Anston Pit Top, topping this were an incredible 11 Jack Snipe, this the squares highest ever count. At Brown Bailey's Pond today were Little Grebe and an excellent female Goldeneye. At nearby Hewett Arms Pond, the female Goosander returned. At Thornbury Hill 9 Siskin flew N. In the area were 65 Pheasant and a Buzzard.

A group focused on recording the bird life of a single 10km square between Sheffield, Rotherham & Worksop

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