Thursday, 10 July 2014

Watching the Moorland Skies

An excellent evening was had by all on Langholm Moor yesterday at our 'Watching the Moorland skies' event. Beautiful sunshine and light winds made for perfect viewing conditions of a variety moorland species including a family of  Merlin; the young birds gaining confidence on the wing but still filing the air with their food begging calls.
We were surrounded by Short Eared Owls - with both adults and young birds active it was difficult to know which direction to look in. The harriers didn't fail us and we enjoyed wonderful views of young birds exercising their wings and pestering their parents for food.  Kestrel, Raven and an appearance by a Hobby made a lovely addition to the evening. Red Grouse broods with good sized young could be seen grazing on blueberries as they kept a wary eye out for anything that might like to make them lunch.

A young Short Eared Owl (Bob Little)

The activity in the skies was very engaging, but the invertebrate life on the ground was also drawing our attention.

Emperor Caterpillar

Northern Eggar Moth
 Two young Hen Harriers (one female and one male) have now been fitted with Satellite tags and we will follow their progress on this blog. Our competition to name a hen harrier closes tomorrow Friday 11th July.. send your name suggestions to or drop into the Eskdale Hotel on Langholm High Street and post your entry into the nest box.

  It is a wonderful time to visit the moor and watch the harriers and the other wonderful birds on the moor. You can safely watch and photograph the birds from the road but please remember a licence is required to approach the birds or photograph them off the road. These are very rare birds and this is an excellent opportunity to watch them at close quarters safely.
Why not drop into the Eskdale Hotel on Langholm high Street to see nest footage from one of the Harrier nests at Langholm and enter our 'Name a Hen Harrier 'competition.
  .......or join us for a Guided watch - 'Watching the Moorland Skies' -  every Wednesday evening 6pm - 8pm  in July. NY3986 , look for the Making the Most of Moorlands Banner or contact for more details

We are just a small charity and rely on donated photographs.. many thanks to Chas Moonie for these beautiful photos of Hen Harrier.


1 comment:

  1. Wow! If only I was young enough to take up the offer.