Monday, 27 February 2017

Wykeham Raptor Viewpoint

We took advantage of a brief window in the weather to head to Wykeham Forest Viewpoint. This is located in a Forestry Commission plantation, on a ridge with great views over Troutdale, and favoured by raptors displaying and passing during migration.
Shortly after arrival a Goshawk gave a brief view as it was mobbed by a crow and two Buzzards soared on the ridge opposite. But a few minutes later, a Goshawk displayed along the ridge in their territorial rollercoaster-like display, climbing up and stooping down repeatedly (the spot on the top shot is a goshawk). Although I've seen Sparrowhawks displaying like this over my street, the setting here was fantastic. A few Crossbills called from the spruce trees and one of them crossed between them. After a short while, the rain started to fall softly, but the dark clouds looked very ominous, so it was time to call it a day. I will definitely be back here, in the summer, where Honey Buzzards can be seen from the viewpoint.
 The viewpoint is 5 min walk from a small car park and there are a couple of benches that double as screens and come very handy to support your arms when using binoculars.
The woodland on arrival. 
View of Troutdale.

An information panel on raptors and other birds you can see. 

More information
Forestry Commission Website. Here. Includes location map and further information on Wykeham Forest.

Bird list

  1. Carrion Crow
  2. Buzzard
  3. Woodpigeon
  4. Common Crossbill
  5. Stock Dove
  6. Brambling
  7. Goshawk
  8. Robin
  9. Pheasant
  10. Coal Tit
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