Author Archives: Nieduszynska

Raptor Kill

On the 4th Jan, walking towards the orchard from the Long Pads, Hilary and I saw a bird struggling on the ice on Alder Pond ( the pond had been drained so there was a  layer of ice over the mud). The bird took off carrying a smaller bird in its claws. A passer by said that it was a kestrel carrying a snipe but it looked too white to me ( without binoculars!!) and Dan thinks it was more likely to be a sparrow hawk. It had most probably caught a snip feeding nearby , dropped it onto the ice and retrieved it with difficulty hence the struggle. Very dramatic.

Red Polls

Rachel Malloch reported “Common red polls feeding on the seed heads in Flora Field………seen at the top of the path past Pony Wood going north towards the view of the castle.

Recent Bird Sightings

From Dan Heywood, listed on (Nov. 21st)

The reserve’s arable field near Pony Wood SD468606 this PM:

Linnet 30
Reed Bunting 7
Chaffinch 6
Stock Dove 5
Meadow Pipit 5
Kestrel 1
Mistle Thrush in song Pony Wood.


Plus From me:

Possibly 2 redwing in Flora Field. I’ve seen individuals around recently so they are still about – has any -one else seen them recently ?

Curlew in Big Meadow, Kestrel over Flora Field, Long-tailed tits in Pony wood

Mystery Giant Orange Caterpillars

Mandy Bannon sent this message by email:

Mike took this photograph of a writhing  bundle of big orange caterpillars – yesterday  ( July 11th) on Pony Wood – Aldcliffe Rd path. It was about 5 yards down from the bend where the bench is (on Flora field side of the path).  If you zoom in, you’ll see above the caterpillar masse is a fine cobwebby structure that they appeared to be leaving.

Do you know what they might be?


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