Friday, 27 April 2012


A steady but ultimately productive few days with no real stand out bird but a fair few good records and year ticks clocking in. considering the amount of rain, coverage was not bad and the highlights were :-

2 Sanderling N early on 27th (JH)
Arctic Terns peaking at 7 on the 26th with birds most days but small numbers compared to further south!
Little Gull on 26th (CN)
2 Whimbrel N on 23rd (JH)
Wheatear - 6 on 26th being high count.
1st records of Cuckoo, Common Sand, L Whitethroat.

Weather is looking 'interesting' this weekend, particularly Sunday so lets have it !

Saturday, 21 April 2012


Sat 21st was a pretty steady day on the patch with the highlight being 2 R N Parakeets that flew N at 7.35 am, seems likely we are going to see more of these locally! Otherwise slow although 3 Wheatears were new along with our 1st C Whitethroat (2) and singles of both Yellow and White Wags through.

Other migrants were thin on the ground with 20 Mipits N,7 H Martins N and single Swift and Redpoll sp. Also an increase in Reed Warblers to c5 in various bits of Phrag

Always smart birds !

For those interested i have begun inputting all migration and migrant counts onto the TREKTELLEN website  where they can be viewed and compared with dozens of other sites nationally ( including Anglers CP!). pay it a visit it is really interesting for migration buffs.

Not had much time for painting and sketching lately but heres a montage of some of my favourite old 'blockers' for all you old twitchers out there!

Fond memories!!

Friday, 20 April 2012


Only managed a weds evening visit this week but folk have been out so heres a summary:

Weds provided good spring conditions and i managed 3 Arctic terns in the aftrernoon along with 3 White wags and a guess at 300 Sand Martins and 50+ Swallows . New birds for the year include Sedge warbler and a smart drake Common Scoter- The following photo is MH's fault.....

A Black Blob......
Otherwise i can only offer these highly educational i.d. photos ....

another tern

If they are to tricky try this one - much easier .....

regular breeder 

Tuesday, 17 April 2012


Just a quick update for the last few days ;

Sunday 15th. Highlight was a Greenshank that was flushed from the North bank of the main lake at c6.30 which headed of NE. Otherwise rather quiet in the stiff N'ly breeze although LRP were up to 3 and a pair of Willow Tit showed well in Pugneys Drain

Tues 17th. Early afternoon EA rang to inform me that there were 21 Black-tailed Godwits on the reserve lake!! Now 21 is a fair old number anywhere and certainly seems to be a new record count for the site, although not a year tick . Also present later in the afternoon were 2 Arctic Terns which ARE new for the year and put us around 130 which is about 10 more than last year at this stage - keep it up everyone i can feel a record coming!!

Just a quick reminder to anyone visiting the site whether a regular or a visitor, all records are gratefully received - please either leave them on here using the comment box below or contact me via E-mail at Please phone/txt if you know me! i can then ensure the records are passed to the Master of the Log...Mr DP! ;-)

cheers, Jonny

Saturday, 14 April 2012


Coverage of the area between 5.50 and 8.00am were rewarded with 2 year ticks, a Whimbrel which flew west at 6.15 am and a Yellow Wagtail N at 7.20. Otherwise fairly quiet with 5 Goosander and c8 Goldeneye still lingering, single LRP and Redshank and another small increase in numbers of Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff and Blackcap.

Just like this pic even tho the light is poor!
Migration watching was from 8.00 until 11.15 when a shower stopped play. Pretty quiet actually with 59 Meadow Pipits, 10 Swallows and 12 Linnets N along with single Buzzard and Common Gull.

A few of the regulars watching for migs on the 'Black Ash'
On a different note I was reminded today that I need a second pick for the 'Next Pugneys 1st Sweep' after correctly picking ( and seeing! - sniff!) GWE. After considering time of year etc I am going to plump for Great Reed Warbler! Previous record from Swilly and we have lots of suitable habitat - watch this space! Also waiting for votes from RB who is becoming a frequent and welcome visitor to the site.

Friday, 13 April 2012


Managed an hour or so before work and was rewarded with an ad Kittiwake that was on the wetlands briefly before heading of W at 6.05. 2nd record this year for the site. Also seen were 1 Fieldfare W, c80 Sand Martins and 1 LRP.

Later in the day KP and IB had 2 Avocets which circled the wetlands before heading strongly N - another good record and i think that's 126 species for the year. Not bad for a dog infested hole next to Wakefield city centre!

So just need to find the touring B W Stilt this morning and everyone (me) will be happy - good birding folks ;-)

Thursday, 12 April 2012


Spent much of the morning at work taking calls about good birds on the patch! First up was IB with an Osprey that went high N at c10.10 am. Got a text from Anglers CP about a 2nd bird heading N at 11.40 and sure enough DD and IB had an Osprey heading N over wetlands at 12.00! IT looks like these may well actually be different birds on time and trajectory but cant be sure really?

Along with this there was also a Common Tern E, a Swift and a brief R C Pochard on the wetlands by lunchtime!

I finally managed a short visit mid-afternoon and saw very little apart from SC who had earlier watched a 3rd Osprey heading N at 2pm !

Will i ever see a Pugneys Osprey ?......

Tuesday, 10 April 2012


A relatively quiet day today enlivened considerably by a good northerly passage of Meadow Pipits with 334 counted between 8.15 and 11am, nearly all passing on a line through the centre of the wetlands.

Other bits of note were 1 House Martin and c15 Sand Martins W,1 Ringed Plover S,1 Siskin S and an LRP.

Pager report of an Osprey over the M1 at Bretton at 1.25pm - surely it went through Pugneys 5 mins later!!??

Monday, 9 April 2012


8th April. Cool north-westerly weather still dominating and preventing many migrants getting through. Todays highlights included a Red Kite that spent c15 mins over the woods away to the SE at around 10am, a bird that was also being watched from Anglers CP at the same time some 2 miles to the SE!

A light passage of Meadow Pipits totalled 73N in c3 hours late morning with other migration including 3 Siskin W, 2+ Curlew in varying directions!, 4 Swallows N and 3 Skylarks W.

Red Kite

G S Woodpecker

G S Woodpecker
And finally this for MH, as he moaned at me for not painting a patch tick....! You better buy one now Micky!

Ring-necked Parakeet
9th April. 

Morning started slow and wet, drizzle constant but light from 6.30 until about 11am. Early efforts rewarded with 9 Goosander and the finding of a Fox den which might be bad news for the nearby Lapwings , LRP and other ground nesters. Me and MF met up with IB and we decided to shelter by the info centre viewing over the main lake. At c8.35 IB called an ' egret ' that came in from the N over our heads which we all quickly realised was large and, when scoped, i called it as a Great White!! The bird crossed the main lake and then appeared to see the reserve lake and cut in, losing height and disappearing below the tree line. We took 5 mins to leg it round to the hide but no sign of the big whit f'er!! Great White Egret ! My pick for next first! Glad it wasnt just me!!

Presumably it carried on low to the south or was booted on that way by the BHG colony. The 3 of us searched the likely areas beyond the reserve lake but no sign and as locals began turning up we did a little gloating and then realised it was too early for a celebratory beer - rubbish !!

With a decent sized team now down on site we opted for the high ground and some migration watching which was admittedly slow! c60 Mipits N, 2 Swallows W and a few long faces.......


(not great egret-thats a shit name)

Saturday, 7 April 2012

Patch Tick !!

Before anybody gets to excited it was a Ring-necked Parakeet. Still, a ticks a tick so i was well chuffed with this bird doing a circuit of the Wetlands before heading of towards Wakefield park. There has been a couple of reports recently from the park but i checked late morning with no success so who knows!?

There was another Osprey at Wintersett early morning but sadly it departed to the NE so missed us by a fair distance - bugger!

Other birds of note included 28 Golden Plover, 6 Goosander, several Swallows and 3 House Martins.

Also still present where 2 LRP with the Lapwings and the Green Woodpecker.


Little Ringed Plover

A bit of migration watching late morning was fairly unproductive but a couple of Buzzards and upwards of 6 Sparrowhawks were seen displaying over the surrounding woodlands.


Little Ringed Plover No 2
Had a nice pint with MF this evening sat looking over the wetlands. That was mint, must do it more often!!

Friday, 6 April 2012


Dipped the reported Thayers Gull near Brigg, Lincs last night and was a intending to head over this afternoon but first sighting was early so i cracked and set off at about 8.15 after a slow hour or so round the patch that produced only my 1st Willow Warbler of the year, 2 Fieldfare and a Curlew north.

Arrived at site about 9. 15 and there had been no sightings for a while so did a bit of standing about chatting and then took a call from Dad followed by one from CN at Pugneys. " Where are you!? Osprey coming in from sw!!" The conversation had a good few swear words in (mine) but had to let it go - major downer!

An hour or so later there were a couple of sighting of the Thayers and after a bit of hedge crawling and a short Wacky Races drive I finally connected with a surprisingly large crowd of c250 people enjoying reasonable views - phew!!!

I had little chance for pics etc but worked up some stuff that really does not catch the essence of the bird but you get an idea. Good to catch up with one or two old faces just a shame about that f,in Osprey!!

On a separate note, i find it quite surprising that there have been no white-wingers picked up in the area with all the coverage. Saw one very pale herring a few times that AH first picked up y,day but otherwise nothing else unusual!?