A quick look over No.6 tanks frozen water really determined where we were heading for today and a 7 mile round trip on foot was called for and a trek out to the Holpool Gutter and the views across Frodsham Score.
A large concentration of Lapwing and Golden Plover were facing north into the wind and kept low down while a wheeling flock of Starlings rose and fell like litter in the breeze. There was nothing on the frozen flooded fields of No.3 tank hence the relocation of the plover flock to five.
Eventually we got to our chosen spot overlooking Frodsham Score with a Sun Halo to make a slight distraction from the birding. The most prominent bird of the day was a solitary and very obliging Great White Egret (and not a single Little Egret which was a big surprise to find).
The female Marsh Harrier was sat in the lank marsh grass on the edge of the marsh by the tide line and spent time adjusting her dress.
A large herd of Canada Geese on the edge of the river included an incredible 27 Barnacle Goose (birds en route north?). Nearby, 7 Pink-footed Goose were in and out of a narrow tidal gutter. 10 Mute Swan included 4 Whooper Swan but other than this most other species had vacated with the receding tide.
Along the edge of the Holpool Gutter a charm of 340 Goldfinch leaped about eager to find a new food source and a largest flock of 129 Linnet hung out in the Elder trees on the banks of No.4 tank.
The fields on Ince Marsh again featured the wild swan flock and carried on a tradition from the last two years where birds would settle here after the New Year period. The herd contained 44 birds with 6 juvenile and 21 adult Whooper Swan and 17 Mute Swan including 6 juvenile birds.
Observers: Sparky and WSM (and images).