31.10.14. Birdlog

31.10.14. Birdlog

31.10.14. Fieldfare, No.5 tank, Frodsham Marsh. Bill Morton

Merlin chasing Starlings over No.5 tank, 12 Ruff and 26 Herring Gull (3 being argentatus types), 51 Fieldfare heading south and 2 Stonechat on No.1 tank.

Observer: Frank Duff.

We managed to squeeze in some birding after work and perhaps the last one of the year. Ducks were again in reduced numbers despite the water level rising. Teal reached 231, 1 Tufted Duck, 12 Gadwall and 3 drake Pochard. The Ruff and Reeves from earlier in the day were again on the tank with roosting Lapwing (170), 2 Golden Plover, 103 Black-headed and 78 Common Gulls were also present at dusk. 14 Raven were heading off to their roost over the hills and an impressive flock of 450 Fieldfare containing 100 Redwing streamed in from the north, flew low over No.6 tank and out to Lordship Marsh. Presumably a Merlin over Moorditch Lane was attracted by the thrush movements.

Observers: Sparky, WSM (and image).

A huge murmaration of Starlings starting at 4.30 at the Growhow works end of No.4 tank

Observer: Shaun Hickey.

A Chiffchaff was heard sub-singing on Runcorn Hill at dawn. (WSM).

29.10.14. Birdlog

29.10.14. Birdlog

29.10.14. Sunrise over Frodsham Hill, Tony Broome

29.10.14. Wood Pigeon vismiging, Paul RalstonPaul’s early morning walk saw the sunrise over Fox Hill and from the Holpool Gutter to Marsh Farm he saw good numbers of Linnet and Goldfinch in the area. Grey Wagtail, Stonechat and juvenile Marsh Harrier was also along the Holpool Gutter. Also 4 Little Egret were on the score.

29.10.14. Sunrise over Canal Pools, frodsham Marsh, Tony Broome

Observer (and image 2): Paul Ralston.

A thorough vismig count from the farm included 2 (south) Redwing, 25 Chaffinch not going anywhere really over No.4 tank. Wood Pigeon was the most

29.10.14. Ring-necked Parakeet, Frodsham Marsh, Tony Broomedominant migrant with waves of birds passing over including: 7930 ESE, 140 SW, 80 NW, 14 (SE). Skylark, 8 (SE) Meadow Pipit.

Other notable species: 6 Raven, 6 (east) Stock Dove and 2 Goldcrest on No4. The Ring-necked Parakeet (came in very high from the east above the Wood Pigeons, with Bulbuls and Spiderhunters…must be wild?).
Frodsham Score had 1 Little Egret, 12 Golden Plover, 500 Lapwing and 30 Reed Bunting some from river perched in bushes with none going overhead. A Grey Wagtail was on the Manchester Ship Canal banks, but of considerable interest was a calling Rock Pipit and quite a rare birds in recent years.
Observer (and images 1,3 & 4): Tony Broome.

An additional vismig from Marsh Farm resulted in 400 Jackdaw heading south, 2 Greenfinch and a Redpoll over the Farm.

Observer: Frank Duff.

26.10.14. Birdlog

26.10.14. Birdlog

26.10.14. Mallard, No.5 tank, Frodsham Marsh. Bill Morton

26.10.14. Raven, No.5 tank, Frodsham Marsh. Bill Morton

A short walk this morning from Ince berth along the Manchester Ship Canal around No.4 tank and back along the Holpool Gutter. A Kingfisher was on the berth wall with several alba wagtails plus a large flock of Goldfinch on the path then with a mixed flock of tits.

The two Great White Egret were a long way out on Frodsham Score but 4 Little Egret were much closer where a large flock of mixed gulls mostly Black-headed and Common with smaller numbers of Great and Lesser Black-backed all roosting up on the short marshy grass.

Many Lapwing were wheeling in the air and presumably disturbed by an unseen predator? Other raptors included  Kestrel, Common Buzzard and Sparrowhawk, there were many Raven also seen.

A pair of Stonechat on four by the gutter and a pair of Common Snipe also down by the gutter. 

Observer: Paul Ralston.

26.10.14. Stonechat, Frodsham Marsh. Alyn Chambers.

Seen this morning were 5 Stonechat on No.1 tank and another at the Weaver Bend.
Also on the Weaver were 3 Goldeneye and 30 Little Grebe.
A few Redwing were about and a Sparrowhawk was seen a few times.
The following were seen on No.6 tank around high tide: 120 Teal, 3 Tufted Duck, 4 Shelduck, 8 Gadwall, 200 Lapwing, 110 Golden Plover, 4 Ruff, 10 Dunlin, 10 Ringed Plover, 3 Cormorant, 15 Mute Swan, 75 Black-headed Gull, 20 Common Gull, 23 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 5 Great Black-backed Gull, and later a Merlin flew through.
Paul Crawley saw the parakeet in the morning around No.3 tank and it flew towards No 5 tank where FD picked it up. I saw it in trees on No.6 tank before the track drops down to No.3 tank before it flew down to the bushes there.
Observer: Alyn Chambers (and image 3).
A male Marsh Harrier was over No.6 tank.
Observer: Arthur Harrison
The Treecreeper was seen again and an escapee Ring-necked Parakeet is presumably the same bird seen a few weeks ago but this time it was heard calling, “pieces of eight, pieces of eight”.
Observer: Frank Duff.
26.10.14. Linnet, Frodsham Marsh. Bill Morton
During dusk a walk along the track of No.5 tank with a keen eye cocked to the opportunity of seeing Polly the Parakeet was rewarded with yet another sheep carcass in the field being quickly despatched by 27 Raven., An additional 15 were out and about elsewhere on the marsh. A flock of 36 Mallard flew over No.6 tank (see image above) and then flew back out to the Weaver Estuary watched over by the Peregrine on the blue-topped chimney.
Observers: Sparky, WSM (images 1,2 & 4).

25.10.14. Birdlog

25.10.14. Birdlog

25.10.14. Muddy track on no.4 tank, Frodsham Score, Frodsham Marsh. Bill Morton

Mississippi mud track along No.4 tank today.

Frank took the Greta Garbo option and ” I want to be alone” birded the periphery of the marsh which resulted in him seeing 2 Coal Tit a localise rare bird but expected to be seen during the autumn migration. A flock of 10 Siskin joined up with the Goldfinch hordes. Several Jays and a singing Cetti’s Warbler were also noted. Later he had a flock of 150 Golden Plover from Marsh Farm and a Stonechat along the fence line on No.1 tank.

Observer: Frank Duff.

25.10.14. Great White Egret, Frodsham Score, Frodsham Marsh. Bill Morton

The main action was on the rising tide at Frodsham Score. A staggering 7000 Canada Geese were impressive by anyone’s standards and hidden amongst their herd was a couple of Barnacle Goose. 5 Whooper Swan were distantly on the edge of the salt marsh at Ince and apart from feeding didn’t really come close. Other waterfowl featured 12 Shoveler and 800 Wigeon riding the tide in and out.

25.10.14. Grey Heron, Great White Egret and 2 Little Egret, Frodsham Score, Frodsham Marsh. Bill Morton

10 Little and 2 Great White Egret were viewable throughout the watching period and one of the little’s was colour ringed (details to follow). We had handy size comparisons with the egrets and (10) Grey Heron which were watching the tidal gutters filling, then flooding and forcing out small animals which they shared with the marauding gulls.

25.10.14. Sheep stting the tide out on Frodsham Score, Frodsham Marsh. Bill Morton

Shorebirds were below par but 100 Oystercatcher, 6 Black-tailed Godwit (surprising, considering they should have numbered thousands rather than a half-dozen). 1000 Dunlin, a calling Greenshank and smaller numbers of Redshank barely stretched the imagination.

25.10.14. Rainbow over the east end of No.6 tank, Frodsham Marsh. Bill Morton

With all these birds about it was inevitable they would attract some raptors, an adult and juvenile Peregrine, Sparrowhawk and a pale phase Common Buzzard helped themselves to the bounty.

Nearby a Chiffchaff was calling from the reed bed on No.4 tank.


Observers: Tony Broome, WSM (video and images).

No.6 tank continued to attract 12 Ruff, 50 Dunlin and the usual assortment of aytha ducks.

Observer: WSM.

25.10.14. Frodsham Score, Frodsham Marsh. Bill Morton.

Elsewhere on the marsh a possible Mallard x Common Shelduck hybrid and 67 Tufted Duck were on the Weaver estuary where also 4 Little Grebe and 12 Great Crested Grebe were on the choppy waters.

A Stoat was hunting the track along Alder Lane.

Observers: Tony Broome, WSM.

A Merlin on the fence by the pipes on the southern edge of No.1 tank early afternoon.

Observer: Jean Roberts.

22.10.14. Birdlog

22.10.14. Birdlog

22.10.14. Ruff, No.6 tank, Frodsham Marsh. Bill Morton

After work trip to the marsh and a mixture of species to keep the interest level up. The numbers of duck on No.6 tank are restricted by the amount of water within the basin so this was reflected by the smaller flock size. 59 Tufted Duck, 1 drake Pochard, 176 Common Teal and 7 Common Shelduck represented the waterfowl. 12 Ruff, 2 Golden Plover and 134 Lapwing made a typical low water (tide wise) count.

The Peregrine was again perched up high on the blue-topped chimney, a single Kestrel hovering over No.5 tank and 4 Common Buzzard were following the earth works on No.3 tank.

Observers: Arthur Harrison, WSM (and image).

7 Whooper Swans were flying over Runcorn Hill towards the Weaver estuary at sunrise (WSM).

21.10.14. Birdlog

21.10.14. Birdlog

21.10.14. Gonzalo hitting Frodsham Marsh. Tony Broome.

The tail end of Hurricane Gonzalo produced a generally windy and wild day but at dusk the rain hit with a vengeance and travelling across the Weaver viaduct at 19.00hrs saw the rain coming in horizontal sheets…a bit scary (WSM).

21.10.14. Gonzalo hitting Frodsham Marsh. Tony Broome

Images and video taken at dusk from Marsh Farm.

A force 10, but too windy and then wet, and then too dark to see anything blown into the Mersey estuary at Marsh Farm. A look on No.6 tank which was catering for a cowering bunch of 1500 gulls coming into their pre-roost, with mainly Black-headed, but 200 Lesser-backed and a few Common maybe 100 birds.

21.10.14. Gonzalo hitting Frodsham Marsh. Tony Broome


Observer:Tony Broome (Video and images).

20.10.14. Birdlog

20.10.14. Birdlog

20.10.14. Song Thrush (continental). Frodsham Marsh. Bill Morton

A juvenile Marsh Harrier  was over the Gowy Meadows alongside the M56 this afternoon.

Observer: Paul Ralston.

After work met up with FD for a brief watch along the Weaver Navigation where we saw 200 Jackdaw en route to their roost in Runcorn. 2 Jay and 2 Collared Dove were noted.

Observers: Frank Duff, WSM (and image).

Earlier in the day and on Runcorn Hill a roving tit flock contained 2 Chiffchaff, Blackcap and several Goldcrest. WSM

19.10.14. Birdlog

19.10.14. Birdlog

09.11.13. Great White Egret, Frodsham Score. Bill Morton.

The two Great White and 4 Little Egret on Frodsham Score this morning won’t know what’s about to hit them come Tuesday when the last throes of ex-hurricane speedy Gonzalo will batter the marsh.

Observer: Paul Ralston

Meanwhile on No.6 tank Arthur H had 6 Greenshank.

At a site to the east of the marsh a rare Treecreeper was a surprise find while a Great Spotted Woodpecker, Grey Wagtail and Chiffchaff were also seen.

Observer: Frank Duff.

Image by WSM.


18.10.14. Birdlog

18.10.14. Birdlog winter female Stonechat, Redwall reedbed, Frodsham Marsh. Tony Broome.

18.10.14. male Stonechat, Redwall reedbed, Frodsham Marsh. Tony Broome.Another early weekend start saw us checking the high tide roost on No.6 tank. There was the usual flock of Lapwing here reaching a total of 340 birds (per Jean Roberts).

The two Little Stint continue to be found with, 16 Ruff, 15 Golden Plover and 100 Dunlin. Sharing the same area of mud was a flock of 80 Linnet.

Out on the flooded area were 120 Common Teal, 2 Pintail and 34 Tufted Duck.

18.10.14. Stolt Petrel, Manchester Ship Canal, Frodsham Marsh. Bill MortonA brief look over Marsh Farm was not up to the effort but a male and female Stonechat along the pipeline on No.1 tank were possibly the same pair at Redwall reedbed later in the day. Although the farm area its self didn’t produce much we did encounter a petrel on the ship canal.

18.10.14. Red-legged Partridges, Frodsham Marsh. Bill Morton

Along Brook Furlong Lane a covey of 15 Red-legged Partridge were a little foolish walking along the pot-holed track and were nearly ambushed by a couple of Stoat.

Redwall reedbed had a pair of Stonechat which may have been the birds seen earlier? While out on the Weaver estuary 3 Great Crested and 14 Little Grebe, 320 Tufted Duck and the first Goldeneye ( 2 female types) of the autumn were in with the Tufted Duck flock.

Moving across the marsh and sentinel like we watched over Frodsham Score from the north-east corner of No.4 tank. A Whooper Swan was favouring a quiet corner on the salt marsh and 4 Little and 2 Great White Egret were out on the marsh towards Ince marshes. Other birds of note were a mixed flock of feeding Black-tailed Godwit and Curlew numbering 1000 birds.

The industrial blast of a Cetti’s Warbler was heard at the eastern side of the marsh where there was also a Chiffchaff, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Kingfisher and a Collared Dove.

The mild weather still encourages the emergence of butterflies with a couple of Red Admiral and a Small Tortoisehell, Common Darter and Migrant Hawker Dragonflies were also seen.

Observers: Tony Broome (images 1&2), Frank Duff, WSM (images 3&4).

Video link of the male Stonechat at Redwall reedbed…http://vimeo.com/109384013

17.10.14. Birdlog

17.10.14. Birdlog

17.10.14. Frodsham Marsh. Paul Ralston.

17.10.14. Frodsham Marsh. Paul Ralston. IMG_7930

Out this morning with Stewart along the Holpool Gutter, MSC and back down Lordship Lane which produced the following:  juvenile Marsh Harrier alongside the gutter and over No.4 tank. 2 Green Sandpiper flushed by a sailing narrow boat on the ship canal. 4 Little Grebe also on the canal. The ‘Splashing Pool’ held only 2 Coot, 2 Little Grebe and a single Moorhen . A  male Kestrel was given a hard time by 6 Carrion Crows and a Sparrowhawk was also in the area. Back at the car a male Stonechat sat on the fence and a Kingfisher was heard calling below somewhere on the gutter.

Observers: Paul Ralston (and images), Stuart Clubbe.

1 Redwing, 3 Mistle Thrush, 2 Bullfinch and Goldcrest along Brook Furlong Lane.

Observer: Frank Duff.