A really enjoyable 4 and half hours out and about today with my birding taking a bit of an upturn at last.
I went up the bridleway opposite our house and took a left to pass East View Farm and along past the other farms to emerge at the foot of Ned Hill.
A left here took me eventually past Mount Zion Church and down the Calderdale Way path to Brockholes.
A right past Brook House Farm and then up the path behind the Golf club Maintenance Buildings.
A good nosy about here then I retraced my steps to go towards the Golf Club House and a left up through the ferns to Ogden.
The usual(ish) route home over Soil Hill and along to the Raggalds competed a cracking outing.
Dry for the most part, with just some nuisance drizzle coming along at an awkward moment.
The path through the Bradshaw Farms rewarded me with a
Cracking Little Owl and 3 Mistle Thrush.
The drizzle came along and while I was mid-way through putting the waterproof pants on a Skein of Pink Footed Geese appeared, way over Mixenden res > SW (ish).
With the pants half on and half off I managed to get a few distant shots.
I guessed at 40+ birds, later I had an enjoyable chat with NK. where he was of the same opinion, although his view was obscured by trees.
The picture, however, shows a good few more, C80 birds.
A Kestrel was hereabouts a Mistle Thrush in trees and a Jay was on a stile on the 'Mixenden' path behind the Golf Buildings.
Lapwing were in good supply with 2 large flocks seen on the walk.
Ogden Water , on first glance, was it's usual self so I opted to eat my butties with a coffee in the visitors centre cafe.
The coffee is good, even coming from a machine and at £1 a good do on a cold day like today.
I enjoyed a chat with the 2 lady volunteers as I sat in the cafe 'warm as toast'.
Back to reality and Ogden Water had not perked up much during my absence just the usual small gulls with a couple of Lesser Black Backed sp.
A lone duck was miles off - a Mallard perhaps although the bill looks rather long?
The timing seems to be important at Ogden, late afternoon fairing a lot better than mid-afternoon.
Crossing Back Lane to go through the Outdoor Centre a Little Owl was on a wall.
A Pr. Bullfinch were hereabouts (my bogey bird).
I managed to get a photo of the Female bird - a rare thing for me.
Coal Lane was good to me as well with a very distant Stonechat on a field wall.
Raggalds Flood had one Black Headed Gull and 4 Snipe.
Here again - timing seems to affect the birds seen.
A really enjoyable day with interesting birds turning up frequently to keep the smile on my face.
OH! I forgot to mention yesterday that I'd been invited to a Fancy Dress party in Birmingham by my Brummie mate.
He rang to tell me to get dressed up - the theme was SPICE.
I though of dressing up as one of the spice girls but in the end opted for dressing as a Chilli Pepper - all reds and greens.
When I got to the party, everyone was dressed as astronauts!
The path to East View Farm
Common Gulls in flight (I think)
Lesser Black Backed & Common Gull
Some nice views from Soil Hill top - but not a lot else.
Although I was a bit tired when I got here.
Raggalds Flood Snipe
And along the way ....