Whilst a large part of the country basked in unusually warm February temperatures, in this part of North Yorkshire we missed out. 12 celsius was the best we managed here whilst other parts of the country saw more than 18 celsius.
On the moor it felt decidedly chilly in a strong south westerly breeze. But I did hear the first male Golden Plovers way up above calling their plaintive “peeeoo” song. Some Lapwings were also displaying, it won’t be long before the Curlews are back!
Crossbills were very vocal and at least one was seen carrying nest material. Their song is both rich and far carrying and when several are singing in the same vicinity the resulting sound is surprisingly exotic though the temperature is not. I had some lovely views of Crossbills descending to drink. They have to do this very frequently as their diet of pine seeds is very dry.
I found these beautiful Cladonia lichens on old pine stumps. Look how the water has gathered on the cups. There is so much that is beautiful out there, but sometimes you have to get right down at ground level to see it- wet knees a small price to pay!