The hedgerows bordering Brook Furlong Lane were notable for the mixture of passerines there which included a single Willow Warbler, a Lesser Whitethroat, several Chiffchaff with a few Blackcap, a ‘tacking’ Reed Warbler, 2 Goldcrest and 10 Robins thrown into the sortie.
Marsh Farm was less productive today with a light passage of mainly Meadow Pipit moving over although more were over Brook Furlong Lane later in the day. A Kingfisher was calling from the ship canal below the farm. Also noted there was a Common Sandpiper.
Further out from Marsh Farm on the Mersey Estuary was a collective flock of 750 Black-tailed Godwit, smaller numbers of Oystercatcher, Dunlin, Golden Plover and a solitary Greenshank. Everything rose into the air when a female Pererine powered through the flocks.
A caterpillar earth mover crawls along Moorditch Lane with barely an inch to spare either side.
Across the marsh on No.6 tank was a little more stable but it could do with an injection of some new stock. 173 Common Teal, 2 Pintail, drake Pochard, 4 Shoveler and 6 Tufted Duck. 4 Ruff joined 340 Lapwing. Also heard was a Reed Warbler
Observers: Tony Broome, Frank Duff, WSM (and images).
Another amble around the marsh this aft. A gathering of about 400 Starling on pylons above Spring Farm with attendant Peregrine and the usual Kestrel plus six Common Buzzard nearby. Along Lordship Lane a few Linnet, Reed Bunting and still singing Chiffchaff. Very quiet in view of the easterly winds.
Observer: Brian Rimmer.
After Brian handed me the baton I shuddered to a halt finding it hard to run up a list of anything worthy of an inclusion this evening…a veritable birding wasteland! For what its worth a gathering of 430 Lapwing dropped in to roost with 5 Grey Heron, 2 Pintail, 234 Common Teal, 4 Gadwall, 34 Common Shelduck and 23 Mallard. A Sparrowhawk was about its business hunting the track between No.5 & 6.
Observer and images: WSM
8 Grey Heron, 20 Cormorant, Lapwing, 4 Ruff and the other usual suspects. The Starlings were really starting to gather with big flocks circling round the Elderberry bushes.
Observers: Heather, Nigel, Findlay and Harley Wilde (images 2 & 3).
Image 1 by WSM
A quick dash after work to spend sometime watching over No.6 tank. In retrospect a little hasty with the high tides not being high enough to bring in the Dunlin flocks.
I listed 400 Black-headed Gulls leaving the ploughed fields for a siesta and a brush up before resuming their outlook for titbits tossed aside by the tractors nearby.
157 Lapwing, 2 calling Golden Plover and 4 Ruff (including a ringed individual) were really it for waders. Despite the lack of waders it was up to the ducks to stand forward and make my visit worthwhile. However, 178 Common Teal, 8 Tufted Duck and a few Shelduck which were not really much of a compensation. The oddity Athya certainly did make up for all the lack of action and was at the back of the teal flock looking everything a Common Teal shouldn’t.
A mixed group of wagtails included 4 Yellow, 6 Pied and 2 White Wagtail which were feeding along the edge of the Lapwing flock. A Kingfisher that was calling unseen from the bank below my observation point until it broke cover and flew out across the tank, pausing briefly to dive bomb the water. Two Sparrowhawk included one with a Starling take away which it did literally as I disturbed it from the track by the ramp.
There were still Chiffchaffs about with a few calling from No.5 tank.
Another Willow Warbler sub-singing at Runcorn Hill this morning.
Image: Tony Broome.
A Green Sandpiper was close by the Holpool gutter near to No.4 tank. The Manchester Ship Canal and Frodsham Score held a Kestrel and at least five Common Buzzard were encountered, a few Raven were on the Score.
Several Chiffchaff calling at various locations and a Great Spotted Woodpecker was present at Spring Farm. Unusually a Badger stumbled across my path in broad daylight which at least provided a marsh tick.
Image: Stuart Maddocks.
A couple of Hobby (possibly adult and juvenile?) were seen over Marsh Farm catching and eating hirundines on the wing and later over the Weaver Bend. Also a Little Egret on the river with a red-headed Goosander, 1000 Black-tailed Godwit and a solitary Golden Plover (singing!). Also Kingfisher on the reedy pool at Marsh Farm.
Observers: Tony Broome, Frank Duff