Christmas Day 2015
Despite the almost continuous rain it was good to get in a full mornings birding while the sprouts et al were being prepared. I walked out to watch the tide washing in and to see what was occurring on the salt marsh (inspired by Paul’s visit yesterday).
A herd of 16 Whooper Swan were tucked into the bund wall by the old magazine jetty. 1000 Canada Goose were scattered across the marsh with a couple of monster hybrid birds in tow. Also spotted after a good grilling of the Canada’s was the two dark-bellied Brent Goose. The egret combo featured 8 Little and 2 Great White’s. Wildfowl on the shoreline included a single drake Pintail (nothing like the olden days of the Seventies for that species) and 500 Wigeon.
Shorebirds included several thousand Dunlin in their ‘Mersey Snake’ murmurations, small numbers of Black-tailed Godwit and several hundred Grey Plover but the tide wasn’t high enough to get them in close.
The mitigation is beginning to look like it should look (very wet and flooded). A couple of Common Shelduck and Common Teal shared the area with 4 Shoveler, a single Black-tailed Godwit, Dunlin and 1000 Lapwing but surprisingly no Golden Plover?
After the rain started to increase I made my way back to my car and stopping off to watch over No.6 tank. The usual array of ducks included 18 Common Pochard, 7 Tufted Duck, 27 Gadwall, 23 Shoveler, 400 Common Teal and eventually the Green-winged Teal emerged from the emergent Vegetation.
Merry Christmas everyone.
Observer and images: WSM