January, 2011

Aire Valley - Fairburn Ings and St Aidan's

Aire Valley - Fairburn Ings and St Aidan's
Do you love Fairburn Ings and St Aidan's? Share your thoughts with the community. Or if you're thinking about visiting and would like to find out more, ask away!

Aire Valley - Fairburn Ings and St Aidan's

  • Brilliant Big Garden Birdwatch!

    This weekend was time for the 'Big Garden Birdwatch' and we celebrated in style at Fairburn Ings. After several radio appearances on Saturday we had our special event on Sunday. It was great to see so many people on the reserve with a lot coming along to find out more about 'Big Garden Birdwatch' In the centre we had garden bird mask making and 'create your own plastic bottle bird feeder' for children and a question and answer table for grown ups. Outside we had three guided walks around our garden bird discovery trail. In the morning we did our own survey at the wild garden and clocked up an amazing 20 species in one hour.

    Robin          3                         Coal tit                                                     1

    Bullfinch     5                         Collard dove                                           2

    Pheasant   3                         Tree Sparrow                                         13

    Moorhen     2                         Greenfinch                                              2

    Goldfinch    6                         Long tailed tit                                         6

    Dunnock     5                         Redpoll                                                   1

    Chaffinch    2                         Great spotted woodpecker                 1

    Blackbird    3                         Willow tit                                                 1

    Blue Tit       4                          Reed bunting                                        1

    Great Tit     2                          House sparrow                                     1

    All in all it was a great weekend!

    Bullfinch (Sue tranter rspb images)

    Elsewhere on the reserve a long-eared owl has returned to the usual roosting site at Lin Dyke and has been seen for several days. It can be difficult to spot because it tends to perch in hawthorn very close to the reed line and it can take a bit of patience to pick it out.

    Redpoll are still being seen in large numbers with flocks of up to 200 being seen in the silver birch around the board walk and along main bay.

    Other birds seen over the last week included goosanders, smew, whooper swans, kingfishers, water rails, pin tails and goldeneye. The white fronted geese are still at Lin Dyke, 

  • Big Garden Birdwatch

    Remember to take part in the 'Big Garden Birdwatch' this weekend and come along to our special event on Sunday!!

  • Out and about on the reserve

    There has been a lot of activity on the reserve over the last week or so, with still more waterfowl returning . Goosanders are being seen mainly on the Village and Main bays and a female smew was present on a few days. Goldeneyes are being seen on Main bay and the river and 25 teal were seen feeding at Pickup hide yesterday. Seven white fronted geese has been resident in the Lin Dyke area and good numbers of pink feet can often be seen flying over the reserve. This morning three whooper swans were seen at Spoonbilll Flash.

    There have continued to be some good bittern sightings with a bird flying out of the reeds at the left side of the duck feeding platform lat Monday. I spent 15 minutes the next day trying to convince my self that a hole in the reeds was a bittern but the light changed and it was just a hole in the reeds!

    Last Friday was a great day for redpoll with 80 lesser, 15 mealy and 1 artic being reported along the river bank trail, also on the same day a stonechat was seen in scrub at the top  of Redshale road.

    The kingfisher is still delighting everybody at the screen aan at the feeding station are still a great place to see a variety of birds including the water rails which are still regular visitors. Treecreepers and willow tits are a common sight around the board walks along with the usual birds such as flocks of goldfinches and tree sparrows.