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 anticipationte to have 

More Recent Events

 

Covid has had a negative impact on much of my local birding with my local sewage works becoming out of bounds with this site previousely accounting for the majority of my records.

In more recent times I am spending more and more time in North Lincolnshire due to family reasons but have been fortunate to become familiar with some of the splendid Nature Reserves on Southern side of the River Humber particulary the Reserves Far Ings and especialy Alkborough Flats.

These two reserves are excellent for many Marsh and Wading birds with Alkborough being one of the best Bearded Tit sites iv ever encountered.

 

I look forwards to posting my sightings from this part of the country.


Photo Gallery: Homepage

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News

22/06/2010 13:42

Tendaba camp

Tendaba camp is a must trip for travelling birders and is situated on the riverGambia about 100km from the capital banjul and around 145km from the main town of Serrekunda.Accomodation is rather basic and is in Thatched and whitewashed round houses.There is showers and electricity in each of these...

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05/06/2010 19:05

Hippo attacks in Nianija District

The following news story was published in the Gambia News on the 30th of April. The Gambias minister of Forestry and the environment,HonJato Sillah has promised thepeople of Bakadaji in Nianija district of the Central River Region that the government under the leadership of his excellency Sheik...

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28/04/2010 11:08

Some observations

A bat hawk was seen at Lamin Kotu on 5th of November.30 Ruppells Vultures were seen near N"Jau central River Division on the 6th vof November.A               little Buttonquail was atFarasuto Western Division on the 7th of...

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21/04/2010 18:15

Some recent sightings

A pair of common moorhens produced 6 young at Kartong (Western Division}in early December.This is the first breeding record for the Gambia.Also at the same location Great Reed Warbler caught on the 25th and 28th of April. A Dwarf Bittern was at Kotu in December/January and 20 Black Storks were near...

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11/04/2010 17:20

Tags

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07/04/2010 19:35

Visitors observations

Anyone wishing to submit sightings or trip reports please do so via john@samba660.freeserve.co.uk

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25/03/2010 15:00

Highlighs from a trip by John Hamilton and Pa Jallow 16th of March to 22nd of March

Brufoot Woods on Thursday 17th march inc Short Toed Eagle,Greater Honey guide(see gallery)Long tailed Nightjar pin Tailed Wydha Northern red Bishop Whie Helmet ShrikeBlack shouldered kitePigmy Kingfisher 5 Stone partridgeWhite faced Scops owl with 3 youngsters Spendid SunbirdNorthern Crombeck...

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20/12/2009 19:31

Visitors notice

The introduction of the new licencing system must be counted as been a great success.This was very noticeable on my most recent trip to the Gambia from thec 15th to 22nd of March Anyone walking from Kololi down towards Kotu severl months ago would undoubtably have been surrounded and presssurised...

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20/12/2009 19:30

Website launched

Our new website has been launched today.As well as providing a gallery in which to exhibit some of my many photographs of birds I have been lucky enough to see in the Gambia on my frequent trips,it is hoped we will be able to provide up to date information on variouse aspects of birding in that...

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News

31/05/2021 21:26

Goosanders doing well but Kingfishers suffer a setback

2 pairs of Goosanders have bred succesfully in theOssett area on the River Calder.Each pair has hatched 10 youngsters and all are at present doing well. Its allways worrying when you come across so called wldlife photographers lurking in the vicinity of bird nesting sites and  a recent...

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14/05/2021 22:59

Hirrundines and Swifts gather again at local Sewage Works.

There was good numbers of House Martins and Swifts on Dewsbury Sewage Works this morning.Around 400 House Martins where concentrated over  the centre of the works along with some 200 Swifts.In lesser numbers where Swallows numbering around 120 and Sand Martins totaling around a hundred...

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11/05/2021 14:10

Alkington Flatts North Lincolnshires a brief visit.

While on my weekly foray in to Lincolnshire i found time to visit Alkington Flatts Nature Reserve this morning. It was very refreshing to get out of the car in the car park and hear a Cuckoo calling its head off from a large Oak tree bordering the reserve.The bird was calling non stop for about 30...

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07/05/2021 11:39

Back to cloudy and cold but House martins increase.

Noticeably colder than yesterday nevertherless still brought good numbers of Hirrundines to Dewsbury Sewage Works.There was at least 400 House Martins,around 55 Sand martins,140 Swallows and around 25 Common Swifts hawking around the filter beds of the works at 09:00 this morning. The cold weather...

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06/05/2021 12:10

What a difference a week makes.

How noticeable this morning that the local hedgerows are much more lively with birdsong.On leaving my car in Healy Road Ossett the first sound I hear is of a singing Common Whitethroat with its distinct scratchy song.In total there where singing Whitethroats around the Healy Road Healy Mills area...

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28/04/2021 11:47

Merlin pays brief visit to local sewage Works.

Few thing can be more exiting than having a Merlin flying at full speed over your shoulder before diving headlong into a a feeding party of Black Headed gulls and Carrion Crows. However that is precisely what happened this morning at 09:25 as I was patiently scanning the filter beds on Dewsbury...

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23/04/2021 11:01

Whitethroats back on local breeding sites

There are 2 singing Whitethroats this morning on local breeding sites.Both sites are in lower Pildacre with one bird in full song on the edge of the margerine factory just off Healy Road Ossett and the other just before the security gate to Dewsbury Sewage works. Also this morning now 5 singing...

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22/04/2021 12:57

Peregrine Falcon hunting over Horbury Bridge Marshalling Yards

A Male Peregrine Falcon was circling high over Horbury marshalling Yards this morning for about 30 minutes before going into a  sudden stoop and stayoing out of site. A single Little Egret is still in residence on the river Calder just below Earlsheaton and there are still 3 singing Willow...

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21/04/2021 07:57

Little Egret returns to my part of the Calder.

A Little Egret was feeding on a pebble bed on the Calder at Ossett yesterday.Its the first time in almost a year one was seen here and hopefully it will stay around and be joined by a second bird  as in previous years. On a rather cold and grey day bird song was much subdued though there was...

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20/04/2021 01:52

Sand Martins on the increase though local migrants still slow to appear.

Numbers at my local Sand Martin colonies appear to be on the up with nearly 50 pair of birds either digging or entering holes yesterday.feeding birds on the filter beds of Dewsbury sewage works totalled som38 birds along with 8 Swallows but as yet no House Martins. There are now 3 singing Willow...

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Photo Gallery: Homepage

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Some overseas trips

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