Saturday, 18 December 2010

Hens and snow

The hens do not like the snow - they wouldn't come out of the shed!


First day of the school holidays and we are covered in snow. Perfect timing!

Thursday, 4 November 2010

Sightings on Calder Vale walk

Walked from Caldertop Cottage on 1st November past St John's Primary School down the church wood and back up from the village of Calder Vale (circular walk). Saw 3 deer on west bank of River Calder, squirrels, rabbits, magpies, pheasants, blue tits, wrens and a robin.

Thank you to Michael & Elaine Johnston for making a note of these sightings in the Wildlife Diary.

Saturday, 23 October 2010

Free range chickens

Collected 5 more ex-battery hens from the British Hen Welfare Trust today. We will keep them separate from our existing hens for a few days to allow them to get used to each other!

Friday, 20 August 2010

Viewings from the bird hide

11/8/10 - starlings, magpie, lapwings, ducks and pheasants
15/8/10 - heard curlews but didn't see them
19/8/10 - sheep, pheasants and rabbits

Monday, 9 August 2010

Caldertop Cottage Nature Diary

Seen at Caldertop Cottage between 1st and 6th August 2010:-

Pheasants, swallows, swifts, great tits, blue tits, magpies, robins, goldfinches, pied wagtails, collared dove, hares, rabbits, chaffinches, partridges, mallards, wrens, blackbirds, starlings, house sparrows, dunnocks, kestrel, curlew, bullfinch, redshank and pipistrelle bats.

Thank you to Kelvin, Sarah, Thomas and Benjamin Raby for a making a note of all these sightings in our Nature Diary.

Thursday, 8 July 2010

Sightings from the cottage.

The following were logged in the cottage nature diary by guests Maggie & Peter Gentry:-
29/6/10 Woodpecker on fat ball on bird table in the garden. Curlew, oystercatchers and magpie seen on the farm.
30/6/10 Swifts around cottage and also swallows and red admiral buterflies. Dunnick, chaffinch and sparrows at the bird table. Blackbirds on the lawn.
2/7/10 Magpie at the bird table.
4/7/10 Young pied wagtail on the garden wall. 3 brown hares in the field next to the cottage.

Monday, 14 June 2010

Tourism Awards

Had the day off on Wednesday 9th June to go to the Lancashire & Blackpool Tourist Board Tourism Awards Ceremony at the Mercure Dunkenhalgh Hotel, Accrington. We were shortlisted in the Sustainable Tourism Award category. After a lovely lunch we were surprised to be awarded Highly Commended in Sustainable Tourism 2010/11 by TV wildlife presenter Michaela Strachan.
This is our third award this year - we were awarded a Green Tourism Gold Award in March and a Star Newcomer Award by Wyre Tourism Association in April.
Not bad going for our first year of running a self catering cottage!

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Swifts under the eaves!

Whilst sitting in the garden having breakfast on a beautiful morning in June we saw the swifts flying around and disappearing under the eaves of the farmhouse to feed their young.

Friday, 4 June 2010

Redshank Chick

Exciting afternoon!! Spotted a redshank chick this afternoon - first time I've seen one.
Couldn't get a particularly good photograph though because it wouldn't stay still!

Cottage Nature Diary

Curlews, lapwings, oystercatcher and brown hare spotted.
Thank you to the Todd family for making a note of these sightings in the cottage diary.

Monday, 31 May 2010

Lapwing Chick

We went for a walk across the field to check the redshank nest today. The nest was empty and so we had a good look round for redshank chicks but didn't find them, but we did come across three lapwing chicks. Two kept running but one stopped and crouched down in the grass.

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Bluebell Walk

We went for a walk through Calder Vale church wood on Sunday evening to look at the bluebells. They look beautiful! Well worth a visit.

Thursday, 13 May 2010

12 Ducklings

The duck that has been waddling around the farm for the past few weeks appeared this afternoon with 12 ducklings.

Sunday, 9 May 2010

Viewings from the bird hide

3 brown hares, 6 lapwings and 3 oystercatchers spotted from the bird hide.
Thank you to T Osborne for make a note of these sightings.

Redshank Nest

Had a walk down the field to check the redshank nest this afternoon. It was sat on the nest when we got there and didn't fly off.
You can just see the redshank's tail poking out of the grass.

Cuckoo Flower

There are lots of cuckoo flowers or lady's smock in full bloom in the field by the bird hide.


Steve heard the cuckoo this morning for the first time this year. He heard the church bells ringing and then the cuckoo started singing!

Friday, 7 May 2010

Free range eggs!

Only a few of our free range hens are laying in the shed at the moment so we have been on the lookout for a nest somewhere on the farm. Steve found one today, under an old sheet of tin, surrounded by nettles!

Thursday, 6 May 2010

Viewings from the Bird Hide

Seen from the bird hide :- Lapwings 62 and 10 chicks, Redshanks 6, Snipe 1, Pheasants 4 cocks and 4 hens, Swallows 8, Starling 6.
Many thanks to I Thompson and I Fazackerley of Longridge RSPB for making a note of these sightings.

Monday, 3 May 2010

Redshank Nest

Whilst working in the field Steve came across a very well hidden Redshank nest with 4 eggs in it.

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Viewings from the Bird Hide

Around 2pm - 12 lapwings spotted by Beryl Hartley walking through as part of the Garstang Walking Festival.

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Viewings from the Bird Hide

Spotted on Monday 26th April between 6 and 7 pm.
Lapwing 74 + including 3 + broods of chicks, Redshank 6, Curlew 5, Snipe 1, Skylark 1, Meadow Pipit 1, Reed Bumting 1, Oystercatcher 1, Buzzard 1, Stoat 1, Brown Hare 10.
Thank you to Gavin Thomas, RSPB, for noting these sightings in our nature diary.

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Lapwing Chicks!

The eggs in the nest close to the bird hide have hatched and there are now 4 lapwing chicks in the field.

Spring Lambs 2010

Thank you to Danielle Freaney for these images of some of our lambs!

Spring Lambs 2010

Thank you to Danielle Freaney for these images of some of our lambs!

Brown Hare

Thank you to Danielle Freaney for this image.

Lapwing viewing

9 lapwings spotted from the bird hide by Melissa, Ruby and Charlotte

Monday, 19 April 2010

Swallows return!

Whilst in the bird hide watching the lapwings and redshanks we saw our first swallow of 2010.
There are at least 17 lapwing nests on the bird hide field, we think.

Saturday, 17 April 2010

Nature Diary

Visitors to Caldertop Cottage noted the following sightings in the cottage nature diary:-
Monday 12th April - a wren was seen on the stone wall outside the cottage. Brown hares seen in the field.
Wednesday 14th April - wren seen again on an old plough by the stone wall.

Thank you to the Roberts family for recording this information.

Lapwing feeding

Spent some time in the bird hide late this afternoon, watching several lapwings, 4 redshanks, 4 curlews, 6 brown hares and a rabbit.
A sparrowhawk and crows were being chased away by the lapwings.
There are at least 4 lapwing nests close to the bird hide.
One of the lapwings came to feed at the scrape in front of the hide.

Ducks on the garden pond!

We had two ducks on the garden pond this afternoon - being watched by our cat 'Twinkle'.

Friday, 16 April 2010


Spotted a sparrowhawk being chased away by lapwings this evening.

Monday, 12 April 2010

Viewings from the Bird Hide

Lapwings 30+, Redshanks 2, Starlings 10, Cock Pheasants 2, Hen Pheasants 2, Brown Hares 5, Weasel 1.
Thank you to Ian Fazackerley of Preston for making a note of these sightings.

Saturday, 10 April 2010

Monday, 29 March 2010

Sunday, 28 March 2010

Waders at Higher Landskill Farm

Gavin Thomas, RSPB Bowland Wader Project Officer, visited the bird hide on Saturday afternoon and saw the following:-

Lapwings 76, Curlew 6, Raven 1, Skylark 1, Meadow Pipit 2, Redshank 5, Oystercatcher 5, Stock Dove 2, Dunlin 1, Brown Hare 5 and several Starling. Most of the Lapwings were paired up and some were sat on nests.

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Monday, 22 March 2010

Wildlife spotting.

When I was looking round the sheep I saw several brown hares, rabbits, oystercatchers, curlew, lapwings and a white duck.

Lambing Season 2010

Our first lamb of 2010 was born today! Lots more lambs to be born over the next few weeks.

Saturday, 20 March 2010

Wading Birds

The following birds have been seen today from the bird hide:-
Lapwings 42+
Oystercatcher 2
Curlew 4
Sparrowhawk 1

Sunday, 31 January 2010

Bird spotting

A visitor to our bird hide made a note in our wildlife diary of the birds seen:-
27 Lapwings, 20 Starlings, 2 Pheasants and 2 Crows