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Shining Clough area – Bearded Vulture!

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 Kim 04 Aug 2020

Not an access issue I ever thought I’d have to deal with! The wandering Bearded Vulture that has been hanging out in the Peak in recent weeks has been roosting at Shining Clough for the past couple of nights.

At its previous long-term roost on Howden Moor, it spent significant chunks of the daytime roosting too – so it is probably best to avoid any climbing on Shining Clough for now – and to be aware it could also choose to roost at other crags nearby. 

If it settles here, or another crag, the BMC will update the RAD https://www.thebmc.co.uk/modules/RAD/ with a restriction and I’ll put some signs up at the car parks/access points – and keep this thread updated.

The Vulture Conservation Foundation has a good article here with more details about this particular vulture and why it's here - and the species in general https://www.4vultures.org/second-record-of-bearded-vulture-in-the-uk/ 

For anyone who wants to catch up with it (or avoid it!), searching Twitter seems to be the best source of up to date information on its location - or possibly just drive along Woodhead Pass and stop when you see the telescopes...

Post edited at 14:50
 Groundhog 05 Aug 2020
In reply to Kim:

I have an interest in birds since I got fed up with seeing them and not knowing what they were. So I got a bird book and can now identify most species. My sister is more of a twitcher and this year we started on a species race. She is on 84 while I am on 75.

So on hearing about the bearded vulture (lammergeier) and as I live nearby I thought I'd better go and have a look. Parked at Crowden where surprise surprise there were loads of twitchers. I headed up to the top of Crowden quarry where I thought I would get a good all round view. Before I had even got half way up I spotted a huge bird against the sky way up at the top of Crowden Little Brook. It came down the valley and eventually dropped below the skyline so I could see it against the opposite hillside. It passed about 300m by me so I got a good look. A truly huge and amazing bird. 

On arrival back at my car I met a chap who had also seen it around Rakes Rocks about half an hour after my sighting and he told me he it had been seen roosting at Black Tor. It seems to like it round there so it may be here for a while.

I now have one species that my sister doesn't. Although I expect she will be racing over to Longdendale already! 

 EarlyBird 05 Aug 2020
In reply to Kim:

Thanks for the link. Fascinating.

 Kim 05 Aug 2020
In reply to Groundhog:

Glad you enjoyed it!

And yes, having posted the above yesterday, it promptly switched its roost to  Black Tor... It sounds like staff from RSPB Dove Stone are keeping an eye on it, so worth being aware for anyone heading up climbing or walking in the Crowden valley.

 Offwidth 07 Aug 2020
In reply to Kim:

I was on Black Hill yesterday and on the way back I saw it pretty close up, gliding from near where I was, next to Crowden Main Quarry, across Longdendale towards Bleaklow. It soon came back to the quarry area and was then being harassed by a buzzard. Its the first time I've ever seen a buzzard look tiny. 

 mark20 07 Aug 2020
In reply to Offwidth:

Not long after we saw you , We saw the vulture fly off from Brockholes Quarry and circle over Bareholme Moor then disappear northwards. Even from a distance it’s impressively big. 

Worth an early start to get a parking spot at Crowden. 

 Graeme Hammond 07 Aug 2020
In reply to Kim:

Flew right overhead whilst climbing on kinder a week of so ago, looked massive from a distance of I estimate less than 100m. Even before the vulture appeared parking at crowden has been exceptionally busy at weekends. 

 Offwidth 07 Aug 2020
In reply to mark20:

I gave up on my plan of a few easier solos on the way back and did the circular walk. Glad I did... seeing the vulture so close was quite special. 

Post edited at 16:38
 Julesthe1st 07 Aug 2020

Does anyone have any more info on the whereabouts of the vulture? (That's not a question I ever thought I'd ask). 

Planning on driving up from the south early Saturday to climb at Shining Clough. Don't want our feathered friend to ruin my plans.

 Kim 07 Aug 2020
In reply to Julesthe1st:

It sounds like it was in the area this afternoon, so it may well have roosted there. Dowstone Rocks on the map. Probably best avoided - you could ask around any birders you see in the morning, there will no doubt be a lot of people about watching it. Unfortunately even if it's roosted and left, there's a risk that climbing will prevent it returning.

 Graeme Hammond 07 Aug 2020
In reply to Julesthe1st:

What about going to Ashop Edge (Kinder North) instead for alternative shady moorland grit with quality routes in the same grades? 

 Julesthe1st 08 Aug 2020

Thanks. We'll make a decision on route. 

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