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SUMMARY OF BIRD RECORDS FOR THORNE MOORS 2016

Bryan P. Wainwright

Out of 12017 records there were 171 species (which includes White Wagtail and Common Redpoll). The breeding status after name if present and any records broken refers to Thorne Moors site only.

Mute Swan

Singles or two only, seen in seven months, with four on 5th May the maximum.

Whooper Swan

Seen during March and April and the last three months of the year. Maximum was 66 on 1st November.

Bean Goose (Tundra)

Four sightings in last three months maximum three on 18th October (all TL). Third to sixth site records.

Pink-footed Goose

Seen first two months and a record in May (a single of captive origin hanging around with Greylags); then from September on, maximum 1460 on 19th December.

White-fronted Goose (European)

Two records: three on 4th January; flew high WNW over windfarm ignoring the Pinks and eight on 18th October; (two families of four) Goole Fields then to Goole Moor to roost (both TL). Tenth and 11th site records.

Greylag Goose (domestic)

All months often in large groups with 610 being the maximum on 27th August.

Canada Goose

All months maximum 250 on 7th September.

Brent Goose

One Will Pits Scrape then off N on 16th December (2nd record for Thorne Moors SH).

Shelduck rare breeder

Seen most months bred again, for second time on site at Crowle North Marsh, from the five young perhaps one fledged.

Wigeon

Single figures until September and maximum was 50 on 14th October.

Gadwall rare breeder

Generally low figures all months with maximum being 69 on 20th February.

Teal rare breeder

Seen all months, maximum post breeding, with 600 on 4th October. Breeding was noted on several occasions, but probably under-recorded.

Mallard scarce breeder

Present every month in good numbers with maximum being post breeding 620 on 27th August.

Pintail

Seen outside the breeding season with the maximum being 15 on 29th September.

Garganey rare breeder

A single male seen at the Paraffin Cuttings on 16th April.

Shoveler rare breeder

Recorded all months the maximum was on 65 on 4th October. Bred with three unfledged young at S bend floods on 3rd June.

Pochard

Not seen August or November and all other months seen in single figures with six being the maximum on 8th July.

Tufted Duck rare breeder

Seen all months with a new maximum of 54 on 1st October. At least two pairs bred.

Scaup

The fourth record for Thorne Moors was of a male on Will Pits Scrape on 8th, 9th and 14th March (GF, BW, WP).

Common Scoter

A dramatic increase in reports with 12 records; maximum 10 on 12th March at least three males West side pools briefly then flew towards Goole Moor 11:25. Third to fourteenth records.

Goldeneye

Nine records with two being the maximum on two dates; 24th January and 5th December.

Goosander

Winter month records with a maximum of 16 on 18th February.

Red-legged Partridge

Only three records of two birds.

Grey Partridge uncommon/rare breeder BAP

Only 14 records from fields at the northern parts of the moors with records in April, May and June then September to December. Maximum 11 on 22nd November, and known to breed at Priory Farm.

Pheasant

Recorded all months and bred; 53 on 24th February being the maximum.

Cormorant

Generally seen outside breeding season with three the maximum on 11th November.

Bittern rare breeder? BAP

Two records of calling bird at E end Goole Moor or Crowle North Marsh on 6th January and 8th April.

Little Egret

Twelve records, mainly from the first half of the year and all singles.

Great White Egret

The only report was on 8th October of one going NE over E side Goole Moor before turning E and over old Swinefleet Mill, good long views. Seventh record for site (BPW).

Grey Heron

Recorded all months, maxima being four together on 25th March and four on 20th April.

Little Grebe rare breeder

Not recorded in January or December, maximum was six with six juveniles on 17th July.

Great Crested Grebe

Six records of one or two birds all from the traditionally area of Will Pits Scrape except for one from the Paraffin floods on 21st April.

Black-necked Grebe rare breeder

One record of a pair feeding three young on 10th July.

Honey-buzzard

One record on 14th September of a pale juvenile heading S over W side Goole Moor at 11.10 mobbed by Crows (TL). Eighth site record.

Red Kite

Five records of single birds. On 30th January one went south along Bank Top (GF). On 1st March one flew east over Goole Fields (TL) and on 25th April one went over Goole Moor 11.40 (TL).In July on 19 one was mobbed by Black-headed Gulls at Mill Drain Marsh 14.00 (MO). Finally on 13thNovember at midday one came low from north soaring over southern edge of moors and then off south (RW).

Marsh Harrier rare breeder >1% UK

Recorded all months with 499 on 386 days, frequently seven, but nine on 4th April from a roost was a new moors maximum. Up to five pairs present and breeding took place, with three young fledging at least. Attacks included on 2nd July a male mobbed and chased in tight turns by two buzzards for prey, and it dropped a vole? Which the buzzard caught, and when the female Marsh Harrier arrived just too late all E end Goole Moor. Also one attacking/being attacked by Barn Owl over Mill Drain Marsh on 26th August.

Hen Harrier

Sixty-two records with the latest being 19th April and return being 4th October. Though the maximum was two, there were known to be three present (two males sometimes together and a female).

Goshawk

The only record was of a female at W side Will Pits on 25th March (WP).

Sparrowhawk

Recorded all months, maximum being three on 1st January.

Buzzard

Recorded all months, maximum being eight on 25th March.

Osprey

The only record was of one from W side Will Pits to Will Pits Scrape where it dropped below treeline 09.05 on 02nd September.

Water Rail

Plenty of records sometimes up to five and more rarely six.

Moorhen

Very often five or six, even 10 and occasionally 11.

Coot

Single figures mainly, but 10 or more sometimes with the maximum being 13, this being boosted to 22 if young were included as on 15th July. Young were noted in several areas.

Crane rare breeder >1% UK

From first week in April to mid-November. Up to nine on site at times as on 21st October. Two pairs bred raising one chick to fledging and there was another incumbent pair at the S bends on W side of floods, which also visited Inkle Flatts. This latter pair did not breed.

Avocet

Two were at the W end Goole Moor on pool on morning of 6th May, and were also seen in flight in the afternoon (BPW, SH, MW). A single came from SE over S bend then N on 22th July.

Oystercatcher

Only three records all of singles, on 30th April, 16th and 20th May.

Grey Plover

Three records all of singles: one heard calling flying East on 19th August, one W side floods on 24th September, one calling overhead West to East on 19th October.

Golden Plover

Up to 300 on several occasions but generally less than half this number, no records in June and July.

Ringed Plover rare breeder

Generally low single figures or low double figures from early May to early October. Maximum 18 on 10th September.

Little ringed Plover

Thirteen records, with three being the maximum on two dates.

Lapwing rare breeder BirdLife VUN in EU BAP

Recorded every month, maximum in winter, which was 482 going w on 1st. Only low double figures spring and summer except post breeding when numbers sometimes reached higher as 224 on 6th August.

Whimbrel

Six records all of singles except two on 3rd May.

Curlew rare breeder BAP

Just 18 records during spring and summer all single figure counts of one or two.

Black-tailed Godwit

Five records the first of a single on 9th May. The maximum 55 going E over Will Pits at 18.00 on 29th June followed by a single at Will Pits Scrape next day. A total 16 went E over floods then S high over Will Pits Scrape on 8th July. On 31st July 14 were noted.

Turnstone

Two records; one flew over W side floods before departing S at 9.00 on 27th August. Two passed NE at 13:00 on 6th September.

Ruff

Thirty-one records all in single figures, maximum was six on 20th August.

Curlew Sandpiper

A single juvenile was with Ringed Plover and Dunlin on the morning of 5th September.

Sanderling

One over NE calling all time on afternoon 5th September.

Dunlin

Only one spring record of two with Lapwings, all the rest of the counts were single figures except 11 on 19th September.

Little Stint

Five records all of single birds from mid-August into September.

Pectoral Sandpiper

A juvenile on W side floods on 27th August (MW, BPW).

Common Sandpiper

One on 25th August was the only record.

Green Sandpiper

Summer and autumn records of one to four birds the only exception being the maximum of nine on 16th August.

Greenshank

A few records in May of singles or two, was followed by records of up to four August through to October.

Wood Sandpiper

Five records all of singles in August.

Redshank rare breeder

Present from late March through to late August maximum was eight in April.

Jack Snipe

Nine records all of singles except two on 5th April.

Woodcock rare breeder

Probably present all months (despite some recording gaps) and breeds in small numbers; six in January and 11 in December were the maximum.

Snipe rare breeder

Recorded all months often in double figures with numbers increasing in August to maxima in September with 78 on 19th being best. At least 11 displaying birds noted.

Black Tern

The best year for this species with a new site maximum on 8th May of 20 consisting a group of thee followed by 17 over S bend which hung around a couple of hours before heading E (RJS, BPW, RW). On 11th May a single was going N at S bend.

Common Tern

Three records, six on 8th followed by one on 9th May and a single on 5th July.

Arctic Tern

Two May records the first on 8th of 30 with a group of 24 straight through then much later four and two straight through going E (RJS, BPW). On 9th two flew NE over west side at 08.30.

Black-headed Gull LC but declining/scarce breeder

Not seen in January, numbers gradually grew at the principal breeding colony at Paraffin floods to 500 and at least 220 chicks fledged. This is a welcome success compared to most recent years.

Mediterranean Gull

Three records all of singles with an immature (2nd winter) bathing and feeding briefly Paraffin Pools on 9th September, which then flew S. An adult Goole Fields on 12th October. A first-winter E side Goole Fields with Black-headed Gulls on 23rd October.

Common Gull

Not seen during the breeding season. Largest numbers peripherally to N and E fields with the maximum being 95 on 1st March.

Caspian Gull

Two records of adults, with two on 29th September and one on 24th October.

Lesser Black-backed Gull

Rare in autumn and winter except passage days, generally due to bad weather, for example 56 on 30th October the maximum was 500 on 20th September.

Yellow-legged Gull

A total of 11 records late summer to autumn, a new maximum was 23 on 29th September (TL).

Herring Gull

Seen less in summer and drastic decline since new rules at landfill sites, with numbers often in single figures, roosts provided the highest count which was 165 on 29th October.

Great Black-backed Gull

Uncommon in summer and a drastic decline since new rules at landfill sites, with numbers often in single figures, roosts provided the highest count which was 54 on 23rd October.

Feral Pigeon

Present but rarely noted. Two records.

Stock Dove LC/scarce breeder

Flocks could reach 50 in mid-winter as on 1st January, breeds, often in boxes on site.

Woodpigeon

Flocks of 500 in winter were not uncommon the maximum being 600 on 30th December.

Collared Dove

All records were in single figures from peripheral areas such as Creyke’s Siding and colliery area, maximum was seven on 1st January at the former.

Turtle Dove scarce breeder BirdLife VUN in EU BAP

Seen late April to late August with at least 12 males heard purring.

Cuckoo rare breeder BAP

Present from late April to late August, maximum was eight on 3rd June. A hepatic female was noted on 2nd and 5th July and a juvenile seen on the last day 23rd August.

Barn Owl rare breeder

At least three pairs around site and regularly seen

Little Owl

A single seen on several occasions at Creyke’s Siding and about.

Tawny Owl

Up to six territories located, with one or two heard regularly.

Long-eared Owl

Possibly three territories, widely seen and one adult caught and ringed at New Cut on 15th June (LR, NL).

Short-eared Owl

Overwintered and remained until 12th June, when a new maximum of five were seen, probably including birds moving through. Returning birds were seen from 14th October.

Nightjar uncommon breeder >1% UK BAP

A total of 45 territorial males were recorded.

Swift

Present from late April to late August the maximum being 1000 on 13th May.

Kingfisher

A string of records from Swinefleet Warping Drain, Goole Moor included two on 9th June; unfortunately breeding was not proven.

Green Woodpecker rare breeder

Still no recovery from the two consecutive snowy winters a few years back, records of one or two birds came from Swinefleet Warping Drain, Goole Moor and surrounding areas from late June into November. It is speculated they may have bred on the northern part of Crowle Moor.

Great Spotted Woodpecker

Recorded all months the maximum was three.

Kestrel rare breeder

Recorded all months, sometimes up to four and the maximum was six on 15th May.

Red-footed Falcon

A first-summer female seen on four dates: 8th, 9th, 11th and 12th May (RS, BPW et al.).

Merlin

About 58 records all months except June all of single bird sightings involving a male and female/juvenile.

Hobby

Recorded late April to early October, maximum was 16 on 15th May.

Peregrine

Not seen late spring and first part of summer, generally one or two but latest records of three, as a juvenile was then present with male and female.

Red-backed Shrike

A male on 15th May at Middle Moor (RD) was followed by possibly the same bird on 3rd June at the first bend from Creyke’s gate towards Goole Moor Tram (SH, BPW, LR, MO).

Magpie

Seen all months maximum 10. On 8th July two were seen chasing a very distressed Blackbird.

Jay

One or two were normal, but in autumn, on 24th September the maximum of 10 were seen.

Jackdaw

Eight records, often commuting between NE and SE fields over Will Pits, maximum five on two dates.

Rook

Eight records, often commuting between NE and SE fields over Will Pits, the new maximum was an unprecedented 1000 on 15th August (GF, WP).

Carrion Crow

Recorded all months with the maximum being 600 on 29th October.

Goldcrest

Few double figure counts the maximum being 19 on 11th November.

Blue Tit

Few double figure counts the maximum being 12 on three dates.

Great Tit

Few double figure counts the maximum being 16 on 27th February.

Coal Tit

Nearly all records were of single birds occasionally two, the exceptions being a family party of four on 18th July and five on 11th November.

Willow Tit rare breeder BAP

The continuing decline saw possibly only around five territories occupied. Family parties were noted at Crowle Moor (three from a daily maximum total of six) on and at Durham’s Garden with four on 18th July.

Bearded Tit

Records and numbers continue to increase, and of the seven records this year the first was a new site maximum of 10 recorded on 15th October at midway along E-W section limestone road where they landed in reeds, and were then seen and heard before they flew E calling (BW). The following records were probably of parts of this group roving around the small scattered reedbeds of the site.

Woodlark scarce breeder BAP

The only record was of two on 3rd April.

Skylark scarce breeder BAP

Recorded every month, numbers built up with autumn passage to a maximum of 52 on 16th October.

Sand Martin

Present from late March to late September, maximum was 40.

Swallow rare breeder

From last day of March to 17th October, maximum was 330 on 28th August.

House Martin

The earliest ever was a single on 4th April (CC), the maximum being 130 late August until a new maximum of 500 on 14th October (WP, GF).

Cetti's Warbler possible

A singing male at E end Goole Moor Tram winter till 3rd March (new latest date) and then autumn/winter from 8th October. A second male was singing at N end Crowle Moor on several dates from 29th October, but last noted on 8th November.

Long-tailed Tit

Recorded every month, maximum was 35 on 2nd October and a few other counts reached thirty or more.

[Yellow-browed Warbler

On 11th October one was heard on SE side of Will Pits, but no description was provided as it was only call (WP).]

Chiffchaff

A probable overwintering bird on 23rd February, was followed by the first return on 21st March and some overwintered again with three records in October of singles and one record of a single on 22nd December before two were observed on the last day of the year. One of these latter at Will Pits was a pale bird and considered a possible Siberian Chiffchaff. Maximum day count of males (which, as with all day counts, only covered parts of the northern half and so is not close to real figures) was 31 on 7th July.

Willow Warbler LC but declining/fairly common breeder

The first was on 3rd April and last on 13th September. Maximum day count of males was (but see Chiffchaff) 27 on 19th April.

Blackcap

The first was on 10th April and last on 11th November. Maximum day count of males was (but see Chiffchaff) 70 on 30th June.

Garden Warbler

The first was on 21st April and last on 7th September. Maximum day count of males was (but see Chiffchaff) 29 on 6th June.

Lesser Whitethroat

The only record in the recording area was of one on 30th April in the colliery area There were three other records just outside the recording area associated with ringing at Top House Farm.

Whitethroat LC but declining/uncommon breeder

The first was on 17th April and last on 11th September. Maximum day count of males was (but see Chiffchaff) 40 on 15th May.

Grasshopper Warbler scarce breeder BAP

The first was on 8th April (equal earliest) and last on 18th August. Maximum day count of males was (but see Chiffchaff) 7 on 30th April.

Sedge Warbler

The first was on 14th April and last on 18th September. Maximum day count of males was (but see Chiffchaff) 34 on 6th May.

Reed Warbler

The first was on 19th April and last on 20th September. Maximum day count of males was (but see Chiffchaff) 26 on four dates June and July.

Treecreeper

One or two all months except November.

Wren

Recorded all months maximum 60 on 5th May.

Starling rare breeder BAP

Not recorded during the main breeding period, maximum to roost was 4500 on 1st November with four other counts over one thousand.

Blackbird

Recorded all months maximum 41 on 25th December.

Fieldfare

Last date was 28th April first return date was 5th October. Maximum was 600 on 24th October and 5th November.

Song Thrush LC but declining/rare breeder BAP

Recorded all months except November, maximum six on two dates.

Redwing

Last date was 29th March first return date was 1st October. Maximum was 106 on 21st October.

Mistle Thrush LC but declining/rare breeder

Recorded all months except August maximum 6 on 15th November.

Spotted Flycatcher rare breeder? BAP

Four records, the first from Paraffin area on 5th May, then three records of a breeding pair in Will Pits.

Robin

Recorded all months maximum 23 on 8th October.

Redstart

Five records: a male a Creyke’s gate on 16th April, then a female along Fison’s Road on 26th April, then possible the same male singing at Creyke’s gate on 27th April and finally a female/immature on the stretch of road to NE shed on 26th August.

Whinchat rare and lost breeder

Only six passage records all return birds and all singles between 23rd July and 18th September.

Stonechat

Recorded all months maximum 15 on 10th August. Several breeding pairs were reported with fledged young often encountered.

Wheatear

The first was on 31th March and last on 17th October. Maximum was five on 13th April.

Dunnock scarce breeder BAP

Recorded all months maximum six on two dates.

House Sparrow

Only recorded from peripheral areas, with the highest numbers around Creyke’s Sidings, maximum there being 30 on 19th August.

Tree Sparrow rare breeder BAP

Recorded all months from several areas, mainly Creyke’s Sidings, Swinefleet gate and Crowle Moor S end. Maximum was 18 at the latter on 10th April. Large numbers are found just outside the recording area at Top House Farm with for instance 17 on 1st October.

Yellow Wagtail scarce breeder BAP

First was on 6 April last was 11 September, maximum was 33 on 20th April mainly on Goole Fields just N of the moors.

Grey Wagtail

Five records all of singles in January, September to November from widespread areas.

White Wagtail (alba)

Three April records, a male on 25th, two on 27th and a male on 28th.

Pied Wagtail (yarrellii)

Recorded all months, maximum was 52 together on 4th January.

Tree Pipit rare breeder BAP

Just three records all of same male from platform area, Mill Drain Marsh/Middle Moor. The last record on 22nd September was the latest ever (BB).

Meadow Pipit uncommon breeder BirdLife NT in EU

Recorded all months, maximum was 51 together on 14th November.

Rock Pipit

One over and calling on 5th November (BPW, RS, WP, MW).

Water Pipit

What was almost certainly the same bird was recorded on three consecutive November dates all at W side floods along Fisons’ Road N. On 11th heard three times and seen flying away N (BPW). On 12th at W side Pools of Shoulder o’ Mutton Tram excellent scope views of winter plumaged bird at15:05 (BPW, MW). On 13th heard over but not located. Second record for Thorne Moors.

Chaffinch

Recorded all months, maximum was 723 to the colliery area roost on 1 January (the morning leaving count for the same place same day was 337). In Autumn the maximum was 438 on 19th November at the same place.

Brambling

Eight winter records, generally of singles the exceptions being three just outside the recording area on 21 October followed by two males on 26 October at Will Pits Scrape.

Greenfinch

Not reported June or August, maximum was 91 from just outside the recording area (Top Moor Farm) on 31st October.

Goldfinch

Recorded all months, maximum was 89 at Creyke’s gate on 17th October.

Siskin

Few records but spread throughout the year, maximum was 23 on 3rd May.

Linnet scarce breeder BAP

Recorded all months, maximum was 120 at Creyke’s gate on 27th November.

Lesser Redpoll LC but declining/rare breeder BAP

Not recorded in summer, maximum was 350 on 20th December.

Common Redpoll (Mealy)

Four records, the first two records on 19th February and 15th March were probably the same five birds observed feeding on the ground at the W end of Goole Moor. In December on 19th and 28th there were three on the first date and a single on the latter both on Goole Moor.

Arctic Redpoll

A possible Coue’s Arctic Redpoll was seen on 19th December, at Goole Moor (TL).

Common Crossbill

A flock of 12 possibly all juveniles were seen at Crowle Moor on 18th June, a new Thorne Moors maximum (RB).

Bullfinch uncommon declining/rare breeder BAP

Recorded all months, maximum was 19 at Will Pits on 31st December.

Yellowhammer scarce breeder BAP

Recorded all months, maximum was 18 from just outside the recording area (Top Moor Farm) on 23rd February.

Reed Bunting LC/uncommon breeder BAP

Recorded all months, maximum was 56 on 6th October.

Corn Bunting

Few, mainly spring records, generally of singles the maximum being four on the last date; 29th September.

Mammals and herptiles to come.

OBSERVERS 2016:Rob Adams, David Ball, Bev Baxter, Madge Beevers, David Blackham, Robert Broch, Janet Canning, Kevin Clarke, Harry Cocking, Darren Cooper, June Cooper, Carl Cornish, John de haemers, Simon Denton, Richard Drew, John Durrant, Steve Ellis, Gary Featherstone, Keith Fillingham, David Hargreaves, Pat Heath, James Hinchliffe, Steve Hiner, Peter Hinks, David Hunt, Dave Hursthouse, Janet Jackson, Tom Jackson, Callum King, Jason King, Helen Kirk, Tim Kohler, Phil Lee, Rose Lennon, Mike Lloyd, Tom Lowe, Simone Maw, Ian McDonald, Ron Moat, Colin Neale, Mark Oathwaite, Mick Oliver, Malcolm Oxlade, Des Parmenter, Irvin Payne, Bill Priestley, Nigel Rees, Andrea Rees, Dirk Rigby, Lukas Rowe, David Slack, Brian Smith, Mark Smith, Richard J Sprakes, Ben Steel, Paul Thomas, Barry Thompson, Graham Todd, Bryan P Wainwright, Martin Warne, Rob Watson, Mike Williams.