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reed bunting

The Pond of the Pit Sparrow

Saturday 30th March 2002, West Yorkshire

wood pigeonThere are no teals on the rushy field this morning but we count 8 coot, 3 moorhen, 4 mallard, 2 wood pigeons and 3 reed buntings.

reed buntingI'm particularly glad to think that this patch of wetland might attract more than one pair of reed buntings (left)because this species has suffered a decline in numbers. Apparently it was once known as the 'pit sparrow' because it favoured the small lagoons that were usually found near collieries. Mining dereliction has been swept away by reclamation schemes and some superb new landscapes have been created but some 'unofficial nature reserves', like the reed buntings' lagoons have been lost in the process.

Walton Colliery site Deep mining is now almost a thing of the past. Scotland may have lost its last deep mine this week because of a major flooding problem while thing aren't looking good for our nearest colliery, the Prince of Wales at page

Richard Bell
Richard Bell,
wildlife illustrator

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