Hudson Way – 02/06/13

It’s been a few weeks since my last blog, partly due to the weather conditions, but mainly by my absence from East Yorkshire, with a holiday down in Dorset. The highlight of the week however must go to a bird found by my father, only a few miles from home, a stunning daytime view of a Nightjar Caprimulgus europaeus. This species is a truly nocturnal creature, their prey being the numerous moths available during the night. Normally seeing this species would require a visit at dusk, to Wykeham Forest in North Yorkshire. The first sign of its presence being a soft churring sound. Sometimes this would be the only clue to their presence, as a sighting is not always guaranteed. When they are seen, it is usually already very dark, so views are poor at best.  During the day they sleep, usually on a branch, blending in very well and usually difficult to find. This one was found whilst searching for Turtle Doves Streptopelia turtur at a well know hotspot for them, once a fairly common species it is now in rapid decline. Whilst searching for the doves my father inadvertently stumbled across this individual resting on a branch along the Hudson Way at Kiplingcotes. It’s not very often you get to see Nightjars C. europaeus this well, plus get some great photos, so it was a real treat. Turtles Doves S. turtur were seen, which was also pleasing, along with the showy Yellowhammer Emberiza citrinella at the foot of this blog.

Nightjar - Caprimulgus europaeusNightjar – Caprimulgus europaeus

Nightjar - Caprimulgus europaeusNightjar – Caprimulgus europaeus

Yellowhammer - Emberiza citrinellaYellowhammer – Emberiza citrinella