A Day for Raptor Watching

With high pressure in charge of the weather it seemed that today would be a good day for the possibility of raptors passing through our area. I headed down to Rishton Reservoir to find three adult Common Gulls in amongst the Black-headed's - the first of the autumn. There was also a juvenile Greater Black-back, single juvenile Herring and several juvenile Lesser-black backs.

A Sparrowhawk flew low over the water and started to hunt Pied Wagtails (of which there were about ten today) with no success. Soon it was joined by another and they circled up over the wood and away.

A couple of Sand Martins were present but the Linnet flock was down to eight. Four Grey wagtails were on the reservoir or by the farm and a Blackcap chacked from the hedge.

Back home, I spent some time in the garden in the vain hope that a bop may pass overhead - I've had three Ospreys from my back garden in the past, so there was some form. As I had my elevenses, the Swallows started to alarm and so I thought there must be a Sparrowhawk around. I looked up and to my amazement I could see a large raptor circling - it was a Common Buzzard but only my fourth from the house. I scanned the skies for a couple of hours and picked up another large raptor gliding away from me towards Oswaldtwistle but it was gone before I could get it 'scoped. With the fine weather set in, I may juts have to try again tomorrow before a trip to the east coast beckons.

Anyway, the insects were good today. Peacock, Large White and Speckled Wood in the garden together with a Brown Hawker and several hoverflies on the potentilla.

As a post script, another Buzzard appeared later in the afternoon, a very dark bird, hunting in the field across from the canal. Definitely going to be on the lookout tomorrow!


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