THE DRIBBLE VALLEY

Eurasian Bullfinch, Ribble Valley

A WET MORNING OF INTERMITTENT RAIN AND DRIZZLE dampened my enthusiasm for photography but as a result I managed my highest total so far for a walk on my doorstep local patch, at 45 species. There was nothing new for me in Ribchester but a Mediterranean Gull in fields below Flashers (really!) Wood with a large flock of black-headed gulls was only my second here and almost three years since my previous sighting. It was primarily gulls that made the difference compared to yesterday with six species instead of one but other birds of note included: Common Goldeneye (two pairs, the males displaying on the river); Goosander (at least five) and Eurasian Tree Sparrow (five again around the feeders at Parsonage Farm). There seem to be three pairs of Northern Lapwings in the fields between the church and the Boat House but no lingering curlews today unfortunately. A dash around the village produced the missing Great Tit and siskin before it was time to come home. Full Ebird checklist here - I am up to 55 species for this walk now, not bad considering how poor the intensively-farmed habitat is. I added a Common Buzzard in the late afternoon over Manor Park as well as a nice flock of Bramblings together with a couple of bullfinches, a nuthatch and a Great Spotted Woodpecker at a feeding station further upstream well away from Rib. A coot at Barrow Upper Lodge ended the day on 50.