Sunday, 23 June 2019

Leeds Birdfair

On Saturday it was the 4th Leeds Birdfair at Rodley Nature Reserve. My daughter and I were up and off early so we could have a look round the reserve before it got busy. It was quite a hot day with no sign of rain for a change, finally shorts weather!





As usual Chifchaff sang us into the reserve, the entrance road seems to be a favourite spot. At the lagoon hide a Kingfisher was just off to the side. One of the volunteers had his scope on the bird with fantastic views, he took an amazing phonescoping video which can be seen along with a couple of other videos from the day on his twitter - https://twitter.com/leedsbirder . 


My daughter took this photo of the Swans, who were too busy preening and refused point blank to look up for a photo. 


The usual Cormorant hang out


Lots of Reed Buntings were singing around the reserve


A brief glimpse of a Little Egret


It was a great day for Dragonflies, Banded Demoiselle were everywhere and they are stunning to see! We also saw Azure, Common, Blue Tailed and Small Red Damselflies and Broad-bodied Chasers. A chap from the British Dragonfly Society very deftly caught and showed the horseshoe shape on the back of an Azure Damselfly, a good mark to ID them by, the damselfly then flew off as if nothing happened.

Banded Demoiselle





I don't have an ID on this but it was huge


A few Butterflies were about and in the bee garden by the visitors centre I spotted a couple of beautiful tiny moths, new for me - Small Purple and Gold Moths, a nice find. We counted 50 Ladybirds and larvae in one spot but there were a lot about. A couple of patches of Caterpillars caught my eye and I later found out they were Peacock Butterfly.

Speckled Wood



Red Admiral


Peacock Butterfly Caterpillars



Large Skipper I believe


Small Purple and Gold Moths



Onto the fair itself, it was bustling with people and we took a moment to get lunch in the form of bacon sandwiches and jacket potatoes! There is always a nice selection of home made baked goods in the centre and I treated myself to a scone filled with jam. A lot of the societies are represented - RSPB, Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, Yorkshire Naturalist Union, British Dragonfly Society, TCV, Leeds Swifts, BTO Gardenwatch, Swillington Ings Bird group and others i'm sure i've missed! In addition there were amongst others bird feed stalls, a book stall and the Calverley Beekeepers stall, where we couldn't resist the jam and bought Apricot! Also I couldn't not buy a book....... 

My brother met us there with one of my nieces and I showed them around the reserve a bit, despite only living up the road he'd never been. I was hoping to do the fish pass walk but lost track of time whilst we were walking, but there's always next year! Spending time with family in one of my favourite places is pretty special though. 







We made rope on quite a clever machine, so far it's been used for skipping and as a toy to keep the cats amused!


I picked up my copy of the Swilling Ings 2018 report, which i've already started reading, it's full of the history of the Ings with last year being the 30th Anniversary, a really interesting read, with being fairly new to visiting I had no idea of it all. It's a really well put together report. The book I got was a biography on Audubon, a translation from a French author.


Another great day at the Birdfair!

13 comments:

  1. I agree. How could you leave without buying a book? The book stall would have been the highlight of the whole exhibit area, worth even the mild claustrophobia I might have experienced from the press of people.

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    1. My groaning shelves may have an argument against but it's a good job I don't listen!

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  2. Fantastic an entire fair put to the good of preserving and protecting the things we love! Your sightings as always are beautiful and some good books for later. I like that rope making machine,,,simple and useful!

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    1. Thanks Sondra, it really was a good day. The rope machine was really clever and all the yarn they use is donated so there's all sorts of colourful stuff in it.

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  3. What a great day out, great weather too which helps get the insects out. Loved looking through your photos, and I too would have bought a book.
    Amanda xx

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    1. Thanks Amanda, of course, books are a necessity! x

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  4. What a wonderful day out, I would been in my element at a fair like that! Lovely photos Pam.

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  5. So many great sightings especially the amount of dragon and damselflies :) Your little purple and gold moths are I think Mint Moth or Pyrausta aurata - they always remind me of little fairies as they flit from flower to flower :)

    The fair looks great - I realised with horror that I had missed the first Midlands Bird Fair for years recently :( Love the rope making machine and the books look wonderful :)

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    1. Yes you're right on the moth, I picked up FSC Day flying moth guide and they call them Small Purple and Gold (Pyrausta aurata)and I liked it more than Mint Moth :D

      Oh what a shame, hopefully there will be another one next year?

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  6. Looks like a lovely day out Pam. Love the Purple & Gold moths, so beautiful & look really delicate! Also love the Cormorants on the pylons - never seen that before :)

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    1. Thanks Sharon :) The Moths were lovely!

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