28.04.18. Birdlog.

At first light this morning, No. 6 tank held 4 Whimbrel, which soon departed, 2 Marsh Harrier and 36 Mute Swan. Also present amongst the flock of Black-tailed Godwit were a Curlew Sandpiper, 1 Knot, 1 Bar-tailed Godwit, 2 Ruff, 4 Dunlin and 3 Ringed Plover. Later, over high tide, 3 additional Knot arrived and the Dunlin increased to 52. A Swift also passed over heading north.

The Weaver estuary held 5 Common Sandpiper, 1 Ringed Plover and a White Wagtail.

There were 4 Wheatear, 1 Yellow Wagtail and a Ringed Plover in the flooded field on Lordship Marsh.

A further 14 Wheatear were seen across the Marsh, 3 on No. 3 tank, 4 on the pipes of No.1 tank and 7 around Marsh Farm.

Observer: Alyn Chambers (image 1).

A late afternoon walk along Brook Furlong Lane and around the River Weaver and Manchester Ship Canal. Chiffchaff and Whitethroat were calling along the lane and a Cetti’s Warbler burst into song near the old log.

Tufted Duck, Mallard, Common Shelduck and Gadwall were all on the river with a family of Mute Swan and a single Great Crested Grebe.

6 Common Sandpiper were dotted about the river and canal and a single Bar-tailed Godwit and a pair of Ringed Plover fed together with one of the sandpipers.

Swallow and Sand Martin were commonplace with a lone Swift seen high above the river. Three pairs of Oystercatcher were alarm calling as I walked through their territory.

A Canada goose was on the river with her young and was being stalked by a lesser Black-backed Gull.

Observer: Paul Ralston (images 2-3).

I was working this weekend so I didn’t manage to make the earlier tide but on arrival to No.6 tank there was plenty to make up for that. A smallish flock of 16 Black-tailed Godwit were swollen to c350 later with a tag on Bar-tailed Godwit, 2 Ruff and 2 Knot. The highlight without doubt was a partial summer Curlew Sandpiper sharing the feeding with 18 summer Dunlin.

Common Shelduck were by far the commonest duck present with numbers of Common Teal and Shoveler well down on previous visits. Gadwall are pushing for second position at their current rise.

A Marsh Harrier was over the reed beds while another drifted high from the east an hour later. A Peregrine was circling high over the Mersey estuary and was responsible for forcing a flock of godwit from their feeding grounds.

Raven were everywhere with several birds tumbling very high in the sky and a bird attempting to consume an adult sheep (above) ;O)

The imposing cold front edging through from the north-east brought down tens of Swallow and Sand Martin to hawk insects over the open water and to rest up on the Cormorant roosting stump.

Observers: Gary Worthington & WSM (images 4-7).

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