Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Accipiter gentilis.....

With a fairly decent forecast today,i organised to meet up with Colin and Sheila at one of my favourite areas in North Yorkshire to see if we could see any Gos's.I decided to set off early and meet up with them about 9.30 and this paid off,with me getting my best and closest views of Goshawk to date.
 I arrived at 06.45 at the usual parking place beside the River Derwent and was greeted by the sight and sound of a lovely singing male Dipper which showed at fairly close range,perched on a wooden post beside the river,a great start!.So off i went to my usual standing place,hearing at least 1 Gos calling in the forest nearby,a fantastic sound and it got the pulse going as i reached my spot on the hillside,i then began scanning this fantastic forest and valley area.After about 45 minutes the first bird came into view from behind me and at pretty close range,close enough to make out the duller head pattern on this female and she was huge,she was then mobbed briefly by a minute male Sparrowhawk,at least he looked minute when compared to this beauty!.I carried on watching her as she made her way along the valley,suddenly gaining speed and zooming low over a grass meadow as she scattered a flock of Wood Pigeons,making a half hearted attempt at catching one of them,she then carried on over the valley and was lost to view as she disappeared into the forest.It was then about another 30 minutes before i saw a second bird,this time a male displaying over the valley at fairly close range,giving great views again,with those deliberate,slow stiff flaps,with his undertail coverts all fluffed out,he then dove down into the forest,scattering Wood Pigeons in all directions and i managed to keep tabs on him as he flew up into a Pine and i then watched him preening and perched,albeit at some distance away.The above blurred image is of the male sat in the afore mentioned pine.So after all this action and excitement it was time to go and meet my friends and i made my way back to the car.
 Colin and Sheila arrived on cue and we had a drink and something to eat before walking back to where i had been stood,over the next 3 or so hours we saw the same male again,which put on a great show and a further 2 birds more distantly,with at least one of these being an immature,so at least 4 birds today,not bad and fantastic views to boot.Other birds seen apart from the afore-mentioned included 2 Dipper in total,4 Common Buzzard,2 Crossbill,several Siskin,3 Swallow,14 Chiffies and 3 Grey Wagtail.Another visit to this priceless part of Yorkshire to see these magnificent raptors!!.

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