Saturday, 11 April 2015

Stanage Edge

Today was not a birding day but a nice walk in the peaks with a couple of friends. However, our chosen walk was Stanage Edge, so I had high plans for seeing some rouzels. The walk up to the edge produced very little out of the ordinary; a flyby drake Mandarin and a Common Buzzard being the highlights.
Once on top the number of birds seemed to take a dramatic hit, with the only species we were seeing were Meadow Pipits with the occasional Red Grouse thrown in for good measure. We were also hit by one of the worst hailstorms I can ever remember. Fortunately, as hailstorms usually are, it was brief. I took a couple of shots of the Grouse, as the walk went on I became more sure we were not going to see a rouzel!
-Red Grouse
As we progressed along the edge, not seeing any rouzels we did encounter a pair of birders. They told us that they had seen a few further down the way we were heading, and I had hope again.
In the vacinity where we were told we did finally connect with a Ring Ouzel. It was a brief view but I got to see that striking chest of a male. I followed it a couple of times but it was scurrying around the rocks and impossible to see without it seeing you first and flying off, so no photos, but 2 reasonable brief views.
That was about it for the birdlife. It would have been nice to get a photo but I'm happy with just seeing them, as they are fantastic birds. The guys I was with were not birders and for their sake it would not be fair if I had ran over chasing the birds for a better view, which I probably would have done were I on my own.

Species List:
Stanage Edge: Red Grouse, Meadow Pipit, Ring Ouzel, Common Buzzard, Mandarin, Kestrel, Mistle Thrush, Great Tit, Chaffinch, Woodpigeon, Jackdaw, Carrion Crow, Curlew, Mallard, Pied Wagtail, House Sparrow, Blackbird,

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