Its worth a visit


Welcome to our website

The main aim of this website is to make local people aware of the Bird Life in and around my home town of Dewsbury

Nearly all my English birding activities centres around the Calder Valley in West Yorkshire but more specificly in the areas between Dewsbury Town and Horbury bridge with especial attention paid to an area now known as the Thornhill Wetlands were recently a new and very interesting Nature Reserve has been developed.

Also there is much information relating to my time spent Watching and photographing birds in the Gambia West Africa

My travels in the Gambia allways seem to be a great success with new species being added and photographed on each of my twelve visits so far.

Much of the praise for this success must go to my guide and friend PA JALLOW who is allways completely up to date with his observations and information regarding birding sites in the Gambia.

In recent years my Gambian trips have taken on a more scientific theme mainly due to my close friendship with the author Clive Barlow.Due to his influence i have managed to get photographs of birds published in many African Photographic Field Guides for which I am most grateful.

 

Visitor's notice

For anyone lucky enough to have visited the Gambia to either see the birds or indeed as I do indulge in photographing the birds and other wildlife one cannot fail to be ikmpressed by the sheer variety of not just the birds(which are more than worth devoting a holiday to themselves) but also the insects(particulary the butterflies and dragonflies and beetles) and indeed the mammals and reptiles all of which present a challenge of their own.

In building this website we hope to illustrate as wel as we can the great rewards for the photographer and birder alike that this small but very friendly country can offer.

Any serious photographers or birders wishing to bird alone or in very smallgroups could do worse than having a chat to our guide PA JALLOW who has gained much experience in the needs and requirements of travelling birders from several countries.

Going back to our more local activities I am lucky enough to have had as a friend for many years Russell Smithson who besides being an excellent birder was also a master joiner.His expertise in the construction of bird nesting boxes has added a great extension to our birding activities as we have embarked in the placingof nesting boxes in as many suitable locations along the Calder valley as we can manage.These include sites in Dewsbury,Mirfield ,Huddersfield and Ravensthorpe. 

Allready we have had great success with many species including Tawny and Little Owl as well as the usual Blue and great tits as well as such birds as Wren and Stock Dove.We look forward to Spring 2012 with great anticipation


Photo Gallery: Homepage

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News

09/05/2019 07:26

Migrants creep slowly into the valley.

There are now 12 singing Reed Warblers on the sewage works below Earlsheaton.Another 5 birds must have arrived over the last couple of days.Still no Sedge Warbler on my patch or Garden Warblers. 12 Blackcaps are singing between Healy Road Ossett and Chickenley as well as 12 Common Whitethroats. Now...

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06/05/2019 18:23

Spring progresses but Summer birds still not all in.

A Common Tern drifted slowly Westward along the Calder this morning at 07:45 passing below Mill Bank Thornhill heading towards Dewsbury centre. There are now around 40 Sand Martins at our local colonies only about 50% of what was present at this time last year.At least 1 new colony has been created...

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01/05/2019 18:49

Summer Arrivals continue to increase

A big difference in trhe number of Summer visitor birdsong this morning on my rounds. At least 12 singing male Blackcaps in lower Pildacre beginingn from the footbridge at Healy Road Ossett right through to the area below Earlsheaton oppositte Saville Town One singing in every area. Likewise Common...

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22/04/2019 09:53

New arrivals and a pleasant surprise in the valley.

The first Common Whitethroats appeared back on their iusual breeding area this morning in the Pildacre area below Chickenley Estate. 2 singing males where chasing each other in the tall trees by the sewage works border fence at o840 this morning.. What a pleasant surprise to flush a Barn Owl from a...

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18/04/2019 15:23

First Reed Warbler returns and Sand Martins descend in force to last years breeding site

Yesterday saw the first Reed Warbler return to its breeding site on Dewsbury Sewage Works.The bird was singing at the Hotworks end of the works There are now some 130 Sand martins present on Dewsbury Sewage Works with around 18 House Martins and 35 Swallows.Its nice to see about 30 Sand Martins...

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09/04/2019 12:12

First House Martins arrive with small passage of other hirrundines

2 House Martins where feeding over the filter beds of Dewsbury Sewage Works this morning.There was a visible small westerly passage of other Hirrundines mostly Sand Martins with just 2 Swallows which began around 09:30 and steadily increased towards lunchtime.Otherwise quiet.

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08/04/2019 20:16

Little Egret returns and Gulls continue to build.

A Little Egret has returned to feed on the River Calder below Mill Bank Thornhill.The bird was feeding almost directly below Thornhill Cricket Club this morning keeping company with the single Green Sandpiper which has been feeding in the same part of the river for several weeks now 2 Shellduck...

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03/04/2019 11:54

Early Swallow turns up in unusual habitat

A Swallow was perched on telegraph wires fronting the Brewers Pride Public House in Healy Road Ossett this morning at 08:30.The bird looked cold and withdrawn in the very cold Northerly wind so was easy to photograph.When I returned at 10:15 the bird had disapeared. There are 3 Chiff Chaff singing...

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30/03/2019 07:18

Not many Summer Migrants yet but nest building and breeding well under way.

A pair of Chiff Chaff are allready busy nest building in lower Pildacre and one pair of Song Thrushes have been sitting on 4 eggs near Dewsbury Town Centre. A pair of Shellduck which bred succesfully last year near Dewsbury Town Centre last year rearing 11 youngsters returned to the same territory...

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21/03/2019 13:01

Wheatear turns up at Horbury Junction and Sand martins back at local colony

A Wheatear is feeding in a field of horses at the bottom of Dudfleet lane Horbury junction this morning.The bird first appeared at 11:10 perched on a metal gate at the bottom Easterly corner of the field before flying to start feeding amongst the 6 or so horses at the upper part of the field.It was...

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News

30/05/2020 12:52

Return of the Egret

A Little Egret flew up the river Ca;lder below Earlsheaton this morning at 07:30.The river calder water level has dropped considerably over the last few weeks making feeding for a lot of birds more easy with regular sightings of birds catching fish more commonplace.Kingfishers are now more numerous...

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27/05/2020 10:59

lockdown bringing nothing but benefits for Local Breeding Birds.

A female Sparrow Hawk was hunting around the brewers Pride public house this morning at 07:15 for abpout 10 minutes.2 Kestrels where on the wires at the bottom of Healy Road before chasing off towards Mill Bank Thornhill. 48 Herring Gulls where on the filter beds at Dewsbury Sewage Works along with...

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23/05/2020 19:13

Good numbers of Swifts and House martins this morning

There was good movement of Swifts and House Martins in my part of the Calder Vakkey this morning. The engineering yard at the bottom of Healy Road Ossett held about 100 s wiftscontinualy moving Westerly and being replaced by other birds coming in from the East.This move,ment carried on up the...

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13/05/2020 18:09

Cold Northerly Winds bring much lower temperatures to the area.

Its nice to see good numbers of certain Summer Visitors gathering to feed even if weather conditions feel mor like February than May. Good numbers of House Martins were feeding on and around Dewsbury Sewage Works and Mill Bank Thornhill this moning with one party of some 128/30 birds feeding on and...

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30/04/2020 09:02

Common Sandpiper makes an appearence

A Common Sandpiper is on the rivers banking oppositte Dewsbury Sewage Works this morning.For about 2 minutes it was feeding alongside a Green Sandpiper before moving off slowly towards Dewsbury at around 07:40. Whitethroats are quickly getting up to strength with 8 singing males in the lower...

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29/04/2020 17:12

White Stork over Ossett and Dewsbury this morning.

A White Stork flew over Dewsbury this morning at 11:15.It came in from the East and carried on North West.It was first reported flying over Ossett Spa at 11:05.

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29/04/2020 10:07

A change in the weather but but local breeders continue to arrive.

Despite overcast and damp conditions there was still quite a bit of bird song in my part of the Calder Valley this morning There are 2 singing Sedge Warblers around the area bordering  Dewsbury Sewage works border fence and in the same area 4 singing Common Whitethroats and 5 singing Willow...

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25/04/2020 10:19

Reed Warblers back on site.

A Reed Warbler was singing this morning in Lower Pildacre Ossett at one of the recognised breeding sites.Conditions early this morning where rather heavy and slightly overcast not very indusive to birds singing their best but no doubt as the morning progresses this will improve. 4 Common...

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22/04/2020 09:00

My first Swift this morning

A Common Swift was hawking around the area by the railway embankment of Mill Bank Thornhill just adjacent to the Networl Rail office block. The bird made several passes as it slowly made its way Eastwards at around 07:20 A single Yellow Wagtail is still feeding on the easterly filter beds...

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20/04/2020 09:05

Yellow Wagtail a nice surprise this morning

A stunning male Yellow Wagtail is feeding on a filter bed on Dewsbury Sewage Works this morning.The birds is keeping company with 4 Pied Wagtails and a single Grey Wagtail on the central beds adjacent to the compost storing area in lower Pildacre and although a little flighty is pretty sedentery in...

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Photo Gallery: Homepage

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Some overseas trips

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