Almost a year to the day since they appeared on the Chayne, the hen harriers have returned. Last year, more than five harriers at a time were seen cruising over the low ground below the moor, and this morning I happened to come across a cock and hen bird flying together over a patch of thick rushes. It’s possible that there is a communal winter roost somewhere in the vicinity, but I have only ever found evidence to suggest that they roost alone in the winter on my patch.
I look forward to seeing some of their display flights in the next few weeks, and always feel quite lucky that they hang around the Chayne in such numbers. Here’s hoping that next few years will see some breeding birds on the farm – every fox I take off the place brings that possibility a little bit closer.