Tag Archives: Heron Lakes.

Flaming June? Not Yet?

3/6/15 Against type I got up early on Wednesday morning to empty the trap. A good idea as the moths are less active and I can beat the birds to them. Against, I get up early five days a week so need my sleep but also the orientation of our garden means the light is poor for photography early on. However paid off. Despite my concerns with last nights wind it was now still. The first moth was Flame Carpet, new for the year, and sitting on top of the trap in full views.

DSCN7144Flame Carpet

Others of note were a Flame Shoulder, 2nd for the year, Heart and Dart, 1st for the year but a common moth, and Waved Umber, 1st trapped this year but already had one while at work recently as well as another that failed to enter the trap, but still only the 3rd for the garden.DSCN7155

Flame Shoulder


Waved Umber

The best though was Figure of eighty, again outside the trap, and only the 2nd for the garden.


Figure of eighty

Started the morning with RL at Bewholme Hall. No sign of any wigeon or the drake Garganey but an Avocet was a site tick for me. The Shelduck have somehow managed to hang on to their remaining chicks {see here].


Avocet with Shelduck chicks-Bewholme Hall

Went to Hornsea Mere Wassand Hide this afternoon.


The new lock on Wassand Hide-means entry only possible with the code even if the hide is already occupied 

Very quiet except for good views of several Marsh Harriers. Also two Common Terns flew west.


Common Tern-Hornsea Mere

Several damselflies behind the hide, mostly Common Blue but also my first Blue-tailed. DSCN7202

Common Blue Damselflies-Hornsea Mere

Also had a huge queen Hornet on the along the path back.


Hornet-Hornsea Mere

MR had a male Ruff in flight at the east end so with that area covered we went to check breeding birds at Heron Lakes. With the Island submerged there were no breeding Common Terns but one flew west. Also a successful Mute Swan pair, several Canada Goose goslings, two juvenile Little Grebes and Little Ringed Plover nesting in a stupid place fortunately known to the work force.


Little Grebes-Heron Lakes


Little Ringed Plover-Heron Lakes
DSCN7212Mute Swan family-Heron Lakes

Also got my first Four-spotted Chaser for the year.

Moved on to Tophill Low NR. Had a quick look at D reservoir then went to check the report of a terrapin on South Lagoon.


♂.Red-crested Pochard-Tophill Low NR on D reservoir

Still present and looked like one I had a few years back. Didn’t look like the usual Red-eared Slider. Seems to have been seen previously although information was suppressed?! Following research by RL identified as Yellow-bellied Slider.


Yellow-bellied Slider-Tophill NR on South Lagoon.

They are very long lived with a Red-eared Slider present at least 18 years at High Eske NR and well grown when I first saw it.

Went only as far as South Marsh East where everything was much as yesterday.


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Filed under Bewholme Hall, Birds in East Yorkshire, Hornsea Mere, Moths, Nature in East Yorkshire, Tophill Low NR

“Colder than a well digger’s ass”

Having spent 5 days in Northern Spain where although not hot was better than at home it was no surprise to get home and find winter was returning again. Intend blogging the trip soon but as I currently can’t upload my pictures will have to put this on hold for now. For the same reason I’ll have to depend on friend’s pictures for local stuff for now. Don’t seem to have missed much with the only news I’m currently aware of is that the Ring-necked Duck seems to have taken up residence at Normandy Barracks although has also been seen on a pond at New Arram and the “Kumlien’s” Gull is still on Barmston beach.

5/5 Tuesday, my first day back at work, started foggy but had cleared by early afternoon and as this might be the last mild day for a while thought I better head for High Eske in case the Ring-necked Duck dropped in. Walked round the borrow pit and counted c1000 Wigeon spread between High Eske NR and Pulfin NR. Also a drake Pintail on both sites. Heading north along the river there was no obvious sign of any swans but had 9 Little Egrets. Had a look over Leven Carrs for raptors and had 5 Pintail on the scrape. Unfortunately the fog rolled in again putting an early end to the day.

6/3 Had a sub-adult Gannet over Southwood Road, Cottingham on Wednesday morning. Robert Jaques also had one [or the same?] over Hull University.

7/3 Had my first moth of the year Thursday morning when I found a Hebrew Character on a door on Southwood Road, Cottingham. Unfortunately the day got colder and didn’t bother putting the trap out.

8/3 Went to Welton Waters with Roy and Martin L midday on Friday. Had a drake Smew again on Brough Angling Complex and a distant Otter on “watersports pit”.

Went to Tophill Low NR later but because of the weather only did D reservoir. Had 3 drake and a redhead Goosander. The redhead Smew had be seen recently on Watton NR. More recent news here and here.

10/3 Went to Hornsea Mere with Roy on Sunday morning. Started in the hide where Roy found a probable 2nd winter Caspian Gull on Swan Island [also seen independently by Mark Robinson] Went round to Kirkholme point. Had a Water Rail again with Moorhen in the wet field by the entrance but couldn’t find the Bittern. However found 2 ringed Black-headed Gulls.

Danish-ringed Black-headed Gull Hornsea Mere 100313a Leo

Ringed Black-headed Gull-Hornsea Mere-R.Lyon

For more recent news check here.

Went to look for geese in the Skipsea area. None at Skirlington but the usual flock of feral birds was at The Lakes at Far Grange. Also 4 “pinkfeet” including 2 larger looking birds. Kept them under observation and eventually they hauled out on the far bank.  One had bright orange legs and it’s identification as a Tundra Bean Goose was confirmed when it flew low with a Pink-footed Goose showing a darker upperwing.

Bean Goose front with Pink-foot Skipsea Lakes 100313 Leo

Tundra Bean Goose [front] and Pink-footed Goose-The Lakes at Far Grange-R.Lyon

Pink-foot left with Bean Goose right in Flight Skipsea Lakes 100313 Leo

Tundra Bean Goose [right] and Pink-footed Goose-The Lakes at Far Grange-R.Lyon

Also did Bewholme Hall, Leven bypass and Heron Lakes before for ending up at Tophill Low NR. Again only had a look over D reservoir. 8 Goosander, 4 drakes and 4 redhead, and a male Scaup had been seen earlier. More on here.


Filed under Birds in East Yorkshire, High Eske NR, Moths, Nature in East Yorkshire, Welton Waters

26-27th January

26/1 2 Bitterns at the western end of Hornsea Mere on Saturday morning.

Kumlien’s Gull again off Barmston car park early afternoon.

Click here for Jess Stokes’ recent Driffield patch work.

Mike Coverdale had 5 Whooper Swans on Arram Carrs.

27/1 John went to join the crowds at Barmston on Sunday morning and and had good views of the Kumlien’s Gull below the car park. Also a Snow Bunting and 2 Waxwing over. Too windy for Roy and I so we had a quick look at Heron Lakes, Routh in case the Ring-necked Duck was hiding there then sort the shelter of Hornsea Mere hide. Had a look at Bewholme Hall pond early afternoon then Dacre Lake where we had the “white” Coot again.


“white” Coot-Dacre Lake

Looked round Brandesburton Pond but could find nothing unusual so dashed to Tophill Low NR. A “gull roost event” was planned and Roy and I were intending to be spotters but when no-one had turned up by the allotted time and there were few gulls anyway, I decided to have another try for the Smew on Watton NR. The redhead Smew was close to the hide but I’d left the camera in the to car!


An earlier shot of the redhead Smew

On the way back had 5 Pintail flying south. Back at D reservoir car park hide. although there were now plenty of gulls, nothing interesting had turned up but did pick up a pair of Goosander which had managed to drop in close to the hide unseen. Click here for Martin’s version including pictures.

Tony Simpson managed both Little Egret and Water Rail from North Marsh hide.

Mike Coverdale had 8 Bewick’s Swan on Wilfholme Carrs this morning.

Bewick’s Swan and 5 Whooper Swans [3 adults +2.juvs] on Arram Carrs early afternoon.

Paul Martin had 12 Waxwings in Hull on Freetown Way near the Sanctuary.

Andy Nun had one drake Smew at Welton Waters on Brough Angling Complex. One back at Far Ings NR which may be the other bird.

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Filed under Birds in East Yorkshire, Welton Waters

Waxwings and scarce ducks

7/1 Waxwing briefly at Trent Walk, Brough again Monday morning . Also 30 in Bransholme on Lothian Way late morning and 20 in Routh late afternoon.

Click here for today at Barmston.

Click here and here for up to date news from Tophill Low NR.

8/1 Steve Mulligan found 4 Waxwings on Tranby Lane, Anlaby early Tuesday morning.

Roy had the drake Smew back on Brough Angling Complex at Welton Waters but it flew off late morning. Also Kingfisher, Marsh Tit and Bullfinch. The Otter was also seen again.

9/1 First winter Iceland Gull again at Barmston [Richard Willison’s picture here] on Wednesday morning and Jack Snipe by the marsh.

Had a quick look at Swinemoor with Roy early afternoon. Again no waders or wildfowl, just gulls. Headed for Hornsea Mere. Checked the bushes on the way and was not surprised to see a flock of c30 Waxwings by Heron Lakes, presumably the birds reported in Routh on Monday.


Waxwing-Heron Lakes-R.Lyon.

At Hornsea Mere managed to locate the male Long-tailed Duck then the female Velvet Scoter, the latter a mere hide tick for me.


Female Velvet Scoter-R.Lyon.

Ended the day at Arram Carrs. 1000 Wigeon, 300 Teal, pair of Pintail, 25 Redshank and 10 Curlew but no wild swans or geese other than Greylags.


Arram Carrs looking east.


Barn Owl-Leconfield-R.Lyon.

Waxwing in Beverley on Victoria Road near Jocks Lodge mid afternoon. Passed the spot later but probably had gone to roost by then. Another in Leven late morning.

Pete Scott had the drake Smew at Welton Waters on Brough Angling Complex again this afternoon.


Filed under Nature in East Yorkshire, Welton Waters

Waxwings and wild Swans.

25/11 Still good numbers of Waxwings in Hull on Sunday:- 60+off Hessle Rd at Witty Street/Flinton street junction with 30+ later at Asda carpark and 6 on Clough Road by the Police Station.

Went to Tophill Low NR with Roy to do D res gull roost. Of interest was a large pale raptor in Decoy Wood originally claimed as a Peregrine than thought a Goshawk until it flew and became a Common Buzzard. The same or an offspring of the Buzzard that’s been causing havoc for a few years. Has also been a Rough-legged Buzzard, Osprey and Hen Harrier so beware.

Mike Coverdale had 4 Bewick’s Swan at Arram.

26/11 Steve Mulligan had 15 Waxwings at Hessle Sainsbury’s on Monday morning. Also one briefly in a Nafferton garden and 30 from a train on Beverley Road, Driffield.

My best bird was a Goldcrest in the back garden.

27/11 4 Waxwings in Nafferton still on Tuesday by Nafferton beck.

Roy and Martin L checked out the 4 Bewick’s and 2 Whooper Swans on Arram Carrs. Difficult going due to flooded fields! Hope to get to see them soon, probably via High Eske NR.

2 Whooper Swans-Arram Carrs-R.Lyon.

2 Bewick’s Swans-Arram Carrs-R.Lyon.

Had a look along Priory Road late afternoon. Another traditional Cottingham Waxwing site.

28/11 Went out with Roy and Martin L this morning. Had a Jay over the A164 north of Skidby. Passing Heron Lakes,Routh, Roy and Martin picked up 3 Waxwings.

One of three Waxwings by Heron Lakes, Routh.

Another Waxwing shot-Heron Lakes-Martin Lonsdale.

Arriving at Barmston had a likely flock of Snow Bunting flying north over the beach but couldn’t relocate them.

Walked to Ulrome.

Sanderling-Barmston beach.

Found nothing but missed a Little Auk off Ulrome. Seabird totals were:- 11 Eider, 2 Red-breasted Merganser, 80 Common Scoter, 200 Teal, 15 Great Crested Grebe, Little Auk, Puffin, 8 Guillemot 70 Sanderling, 5 Turnstone, 7 juv.Gannets, 3 Red-throated Diver and a few Wigeon.

Ended the day at the Hornsea Mere hide were we had 13 Great Crested Grebes.

10.Waxwings still in Nafferton this afternoon.

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Filed under Nature in East Yorkshire