Old Moor – 11 May 2022

We set off along the Trans-Pennine Trail in light rain, with chiffchaffs, willow warblers and wrens in full song. After a brief stop at the hide at Bolton Ings, where we saw great crested grebe, tufted duck and grey heron, we strolled down “Warbler Way”.

Great crested grebe Photo: William Bennet
Great crested grebe Photo: William Bennet

The rainy conditions certainly suppressed the birdsong a little but we still managed blackcap, Cetti’s warbler, willow warbler and garden warbler. But the true spectacle of the walk came courtesy of dozens of newly arrived swifts, zooming low over the trees hawking for insects, along with sand martins, house martins and swallows. We continued alongside the river Dearne to Broomhill and then on to Old Moor, with whitethroats singing all the way.

Garden warbler Photo: Mike Smith

By the time we’d had lunch the sun was shining for our visit to the Old Moor nature reserve itself. We visited all five hides that were open and had a great time seeing kingfisher, garganey, avocet, common tern, marsh harrier and much more.

Male gadwall Photo: William Bennet

So, despite the rainy start, it proved to be a truly remarkable and memorable walk.

Star bird: swift

Full species list
Avocet
Blackbird
Blackcap
Black-headed gull
Blue tit
Canada goose
Cetti’s warbler
Chaffinch
Chiffchaff
Common tern
Coot
Cormorant
Crow
Dunnock
Gadwall
Garganey
Garden warbler
Goldfinch
Great crested grebe
Great tit
Green woodpecker (heard only)
Greenfinch
Grey heron
Greylag goose
Grey wagtail
Herring gull
House sparrow
Jackdaw
Kestrel
Kingfisher
Lapwing
Lesser black-backed gull
Linnet
Little grebe
Little ringed plover
Long-tailed tit
Magpie
Mallard
Marsh harrier
Moorhen
Mute swan
Oystercatcher
Peregrine
Pheasant
Pied wagtail
Pochard
Redshank
Reed bunting
Reed warbler
Ringed plover
Robin
Sand martin
Sedge warbler
Shelduck
Shoveler|
Stock dove
Swallow
Swift
Teal
Tufted duck
Water rail (heard only)
Whitethroat
Willow warbler
Woodpigeon
Wren