So today my parents were coming down to see me, and as is usual when they come we headed into the peaks. Todays destination was the familiar site of Stanage Edge, as I could now provide directions to the top car park which I had been unable to do before.
It was a blustery day on the top but quite warm and not unpleasant by any stretch of the imagination. We wandered along the path to the main section of the ridge. There were not many birds about to be fair, and those present were all Meadow Pipits except for a solitary singing Dunnock, which felt a little out of place.
The first bird that was of real note was a Peregrine that flew along the moors and then behind us before flying towards Hathersage. I was not expecting it and by the time I had the camera the bird had already gone. Its hard to tell if it had caught anything, but I don't think so.
I had a boot round where the Ring Ouzels had been before but did not find any, so I assumed that they must have moved on. I did spot a large moth flying around at this point, and was hoping for an emperor, but it was actually an Oak Eggar. Inexplicably it landed too close for me to use the camera to grab a photo, but it was still pretty sweet to see.
When we reached the highest point on the ridge we settled down for a little while. After a short while I heard a familiar call and caught 2 Ring Ouzels flying along the moors below the ridge. They landed quite distantly but soon came much closer and we quite obliging for photos. I could probably have got much closer in the hour I was watching them but it looked like they were feeding a nest or fledgling, so I avoided getting close. I still managed some nice enough record shots, of these fab birds. It was the best views I have ever had of the species, with both the male and female behaving relaxed and naturally at the base of the ridge while I was on top.
Once we were done at Stanage we drove to Chatsworth for a walk along the river there. It was nice and the wind was much less here. There were plenty of commoner birds here, including great views o Rook, Jackdaw and Chaffinch at the cafe. And there was also a female Mandarin on the river which was nice to see.
Stanage Edge: Meadow Pipit, Peregrine, Swallow, Swift, Ring Ouzel, Dunnock, Curlew, Northern Wheatear, Woodpigeon, Skylark, Cuckoo, Oak Eggar, Latticed Heath,
Chatsworth Estate: Rook, Jackdaw, Great-Spotted Woodpecker, Chaffinch, Pheasant, Woodpigeon, Black-Headed Gull, Grey Heron, Blackbird, Wren, Mallard, Moorhen, House Martin, Coot, Mandarin, Sand Martin, Carrion Crow, Grey Wagtail, Blackcap,