Danby Beacon

23 Apr

Two trips to Danby Beacon (the highest point on the North York Moors) today – first at 8am on my own, the 2nd at 10am with the missus who complained I only ever see birds if she’s not with me, so a tale of two halves today….

8am trip – aiming for golden plover in breeding plumage and struck “Gold” within moments. This site is best known for dotterel but its probably a few weeks early for them still, but this year I’d not seen golden plover yet despite St Mary’s Island holding several hundred over winter, and this seemed like a good chance.

Driving up from the village of Danby pretty much the first bird I saw was golden plover :

Golden Plover

Golden Plover - Danby Beacon

Plenty of red grouse around :

Grouse

Grouse

After a return to base camp to pick up the missus… no sign of golden plover, however we did have  on show – 2 red-legged partridge, merlin (plus a mouse passenger, possibly not enjoying the flight), pheasant, lots of meadow pipits, a couple of curlew and dozens of wheatear fresh from their migration from Africa.

Eventually we located 5 golden plover, including one seemingly on a nest, plus on the return to the car we had one common lizard and a millipede.

Famous Grouse!

Red Grouse

Birds seen : Red grouse, Golden plover, Red-legged partridge, Meadow Pipit, Merlin, Curlew, Wheatear, Pheasant, Lapwing.


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