Friday, 24 June 2016
Whinchats of Bowland
Whinchats without doubt,are one of my favourite moorland bird.There is nothing like the sound of a male Whinchat rattling off its melodic call,atop a frond of Bracken.Usually these can be heard from midway onwards,but this year, the strong northerly winds seemed to hold them back a week or two,as previous visits had produced only a few Stonechat,welcome,never the less!
I decided to check a few known territories and was relieved, when a fine male in full song could be heard higher up the track.A quick scan with the binoculars and there he was amongst the bracken.Now it was a case of get into position and wait while he comes within range of the lens!A half hrs wait and I had him in the viewfinder.Sometimes they keep well away, but this time he was very co operative and I savoured the moment.
There was also another male about 500 metres up the gully,but he seemed to be extra wary,so I left him to settle for the day.A few Stonechat were present, feeding fledged youngsters which is always good to see on the fells.They seem to be holding their own at the moment unlike the Whinchat which for ever reason are dwindling rapidly!
This particular area not too long back,held up to 10 pairs of breeding birds,now I could find only 2.
Another site that I know didn't hold any,sad times indeed!So I'll leave you with a few shots of this iconic moorland bird,long may it continue to grace our upland fells.Thanks for taking the time to drop by and view the blog and please keep well!