A late and short walk from the model aircraft flying field to the corner of No.4 tank to watch the Starling roost. A pair of Stonechat on the fence alongside the flying field and a Kingfisher in the ditch alongside No.6 tank. The ‘Splashing Pool’ held small numbers of Common Teal, Mallard, Coot, Moorhen and a pair of Little Grebe. The Canal Pools had 4 Mute Swan (2 adults 2 juvenile) and more Teal, Tufted Duck, Mallard, Coot and Moorhen plus 3 Common Snipe.
The Starling numbers built up to ten thousand and then split over No.4 tank and the Pumping Station reed bed. Walking back along Lordship Lane the Barn Owl was again hunting the banks of six with many Lapwings flying overhead in the dark to their feeding grounds.
Observer: Paul Ralston.
Friday’s early dart from work and any advantage in getting to the marsh in good time and light was effectively redundant after we got jammed in with the traffic heading down to Frodsham. When we eventually got there at 4.00 pm I was eager to get to No.4 tank but the distance and fading light put paid to that idea, so we stood on the banks of No.6 tank with the full moon hanging over the evening traffic on the M56 and illuminating the marsh below.
The Starlings was immediately viewable from the eastern end of No.6 tank when we arrived and some excellent murmurations were made even better when a Marsh Harrier emerged from beneath the flock to cause much consternation. Paul’s count mentioned earlier was partially obscured by his position on the marsh so I would say you can double the 10,000 birds from the views of the entire flock we got, whatever the numbers a great sight.
The word spectacular for this wildlife event is an understatement, but it’s worth making your own judgement by taking the opportunity to come and join me to view it for yourself. I’ll be at the north-east corner of No.4 tank Saturday 6th December for the roost (see map below) so if you fancy watching the murmurations up close and very personal you are more than welcome.
Park on the motorway bridge on Marsh Lane. Take the road bearing left onto the marsh and follow it until you reach a dirt track (ramp) and walk along this track for roughly a mile and meet me there (see map above).
Observers: Sparky and WSM (and images).
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