I arrived a bit late for the communal birdwatch, sorry, but saw the team hard at work erecting fencing to protect special plants.
I like to keep records of how many bird species I see in half an hour.
This gives a reason for listing EVERY species seen, even the common ones.
Half-hour counts will be different for different habitats, times of year, parts of the country/ planet, but they may be important for future reference, as they show how many species are around, and in what numbers.
Although it is possible that a rare bird might turn up in the half hour, it will usually be the common, representative species that are on the lists.
My count this morning was a particularly rich and varied one, due to the artificial feeding :-
Bullfinch (4) Magpie
Blue Tit (5) Blackbird
Great Tit Chaffinch
Coal Tit Reed Bunting 1 male
Siskin 1 female Carrion Crow
Redpoll (Lesser) 4 Jay = 14 species in the half hour
Afterwards, around the reserve, there were a Little Grebe, three Goosander, four Mallard, Six Cormorants flying in, two Kingfishers together, and three Moorhens on the grass between the Ski Lake and the canal.
The great plant find was the Hard Shield Fern. It is very scarce in Calderdale, and Yorkshire Naturalists Union members recorded it here not realising this, so I just read a report of it without knowing where they had seen it.
There are about ten plants along the side of the Hawthorn Alley, the side away from the canal. It looks like a fairly new colony.
Interestingly, one of Calderdale's few colonies of its close relative, the Soft Shield Fern, is nearby in Park Wood.