Ten Society and CWT members took an easy stroll round the Northern end of Red Moor in mid-May. Despite the threat of a shower, the weather remained fine although a brisk breeze took the edge off temperatures. We gathered to the sound of Blackcaps and Chiffchaffs, with a Song Thrush singing loudly in the background. Once on the reserve, a Grey Heron flew off a newly created pond – not a common bird on Red Moor so this was a good start. Despite the slow start to Spring, Willow Warblers were abundant with at least 16 singing males and their sweet sound was with us throughout the walk. Pausing in a clearing, we were rewarded by the clear song of a Garden Warbler, but despite best efforts we didn’t manage to see it. Just a few yards further on a male Yellowhammer sang and showed very well at close range, and there were two other males holding territory.
Moving through the wet willow scrub, we heard and saw a Treecreeper. But the highlight came soon after that when, just below Helman Tor, we saw a pair carrying food. We paused here, and a scolding Marsh Tit entered its nest, offering us great views of Treecreeper and Marsh Tit together! Dave Thomas returned the following day to take some superb photos of the birds. A male Reed Bunting called behind us and, as we walked back, two Mistle Thrush flew over – another less common bird for the area.
Marsh Tit and Treecreeper – Dave Thomas
Although some signature species such as Whitethroat, Cuckoo and Grasshopper Warbler didn’t feature on the day, we recorded a total of 32 species which is a good number for two and half hours on this site.
Phil McVey, 19th June