I arrived on No.6 tank with the tide ebbing out on the mighty River Mersey. Walking to my usual position overlooking the open water and exposed muddy area below there were Black-tailed Godwit flocks beginning to leave the tank and head out back to the river. I was soon settled in position and I didn’t really know where to start looking with all those birds laid out before me. I was not really expecting to see the volume of birds that were present on the tank.
I estimated that there were 230 Ringed Plover, 2000 Black-tailed Godwit (including the flocks noted earlier), 3000 Dunlin which in turn attracted the arrival of 4 Knot (GB), an adult (moulting summer) Sanderling, a summer Curlew Sandpiper, 3 juvenile Little Stint, a Green Sandpiper, 20 Ruff, 650 Lapwing, 4 Curlew and 6 Common Snipe. All in all a very good cache of shorebirds to get really excited about and hopefully more to come in the next few weeks.
The ducks were given second billing (excuse the pun) with 340 Common Teal, 26 Tufted Duck, 4 Shoveler, 34 Common Shelduck (mostly juvenile birds), Mallard and Gadwall noted. The Cormorant roost included 23 birds.
A probable Hobby was seen but giving ‘going away views’ though.
The Sanderling is pictured hiding behind the Shelduck in the image above.
This adult Lesser Black-backed Gull ended up being a substitute parent for these juveniles which was pestering it for food relentlessly.
Walking around No.6 tank PR called in at the secluded pool and presumably relocated the Wood Sandpiper from Sunday and potentially a second bird?
Observers: Gareth Blockley, Paul Ralston (images 9-10), WSM (images 1-8).