It feels quite quiet here this week, like the hush before autumn really gets into the swing of things, but there are definitely exciting things to be seen.

Summer isn't quite over yet it seems, an osprey was spotted flying over the visitor centre Sunday 1 October, one of the lasted records ever. Plus over the weekend there have been sightings of up to 25 house martins and even a couple of swallows straggling behind.

The hints of autumn are picking up in more sightings of pink-footed geese overhead as they stream south for the winter, numbers of wigeon out on The Moat are picking up and the first goosander and goldeneye have been spotted on Main Bay and the Coal Tips.

Goldeneye - Ben Hall (

Stonechats are back from their breeding grounds in the uplands in full force, and Cetti's warblers have been making a racket on the Coal Tips. The other big hitter up on the Tips are the bearded tits, six were seen on Sunday morning after the explosion in numbers last week. It has been very windy so there may be more. You're heading for the first corner of the Coal Tips circuit at the top of the hill from Big Hole, listen for their metallic 'ping ping'.

The Kingfisher screen is a good spot to linger at the moment, with multiple sightings, and some excellent photos! I stopped by before work this morning and didn't catch any blue, but was treated to two little grebes pottering and diving for fish by the sluice instead.

Finally on Thursday we had four cranes spotted from the visitor centre balcony flying over Newfield copse - I missed them but it sounds a lovely treat!