An early dart from work and a walk out and around the Weaver Bend with my start along Brook Furlong Lane where Blackbird and Goldfinch were in song. There were Chiffchaff and Whitethroat seen along with a pair of Mistle Thrush which isn’t a regular thrush on the marshes.
I continued along the rank reedy lane to the River Weaver where a pair of Common Sandpiper made their way up river. A flock of c300 Black-tailed Godwit fed on the sand bank along with 6 Ruff, 2 Oystercatcher and several Redshank. Small parties of godwit passed over and headed towards the M56. Common Swift and House Martin were in good numbers over the water.
The walk back along the river bank and after a sharp shower was uncomfortably wet and I emerged out at Brook Furlong Lane like a drowned rat. There were several Sedge and Reed Warbler singing half heartedly in the reed bed and a family of Reed Bunting were noted. A male Stonechat sat on a bramble bush by the river bank while another Common Sandpiper made its way down river this time.
Observer: Paul Ralston (image 1).
I took the opportunity between the end of work and another duty with a walk along the track between No.6 & 5 tanks. There were still Sedge Warbler sub-singing while Reed Warbler were popping up and undertaking short flights between gaps in the reedy ditches.
The air was filled by c100 Common Swift brought down by the persistent rain that started as soon as I emerged from work and didn’t stop until my next duty of the evening commenced. In between was good birding with a welcome return of the south bound march of the early autumn shorebirds. There were 54 Black-tailed Godwit with the first colour ringed individual of this mid summer return passage. A flock of 114 summer Dunlin also included the first juvenile of the year here. Along with the Dunlin came 14 Ringed Plover with a local juvenile Little Ringed Plover wondering where all these birds had come from. A single Redshank in immaculate summer plumage was the only one of its kind present and 7 Ruff must surely have been some of the birds Paul had seen on his visit? A female Marsh Harrier loomed large from No.4 tank but as I mentioned earlier other duties called me away from evening a very agreeable evenings watch.
Observer: WSM (images 2-3).