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mallard ducklings
There is still so much wildlife going on here in Burley, I’m starting to think I should write to the BBC Springwatch team and suggest they use our house as a base for next years series!

House martins arrived in significant numbers last week, I came across them by a natural spring near Greenholme Mills where they appeared to be collecting mud to build nests.

Last week I became aware that I had got a little distracted slash obsessed with the weir near Greenholme Mills along with the goosander family, grey wagtails and my quest to take a good photo of a dipper. A concern quickly grew that I had neglected one of my favourite environments to ramble… Burley Moor. I hastily headed up to the moor and reminded myself the sense of freedom exploring the moor brings.

I couldn’t believe transformation that had taken place. In just a couple of weeks the landscape had dramatically changed and I was now entering a battle field. Birds darted passed in every direction, an array of battle cries were almost disorientating as several species determinedly marked out their territory and warned off potential predators.

Red kite being attacked

I can’t recall experiencing so much wildlife activity in such a short space of time. Here is a highlights list of sightings in just 45 mins…

Red Kite repeatedly mobbed by lapwing and curlews
Close encounters with two curlews who must be nesting nearby
Lots of young lambs
Nearly stepped on a grouse and several chicks: they are so well camouflaged, as they often freeze to avoid detection, it’s nearly impossible to spot them until they’re literally underfoot!

Later in the week I couldn’t resist heading back to the weir (a couple of times in fact), all the usual suspects were about (grey wagtails, heron etc.) on an early morning I stumbled upon the Goosander mother and chicks resting in the pebbled island, they quickly headed out and disappeared. Goosander seem to be particularly cautious and shy. There are several young Mallard families by the weir now, all of which are particularly cute! There is also a young pied wagtail popping around too.

There is literally so much going on at the moment it’s impossible to record it all… Yet I continue to try!

Here’s some photo highlights from the week:

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