04.08.18. Birdlog.

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A walk out to the River Weaver and then a divert to the estuary where the incoming tide gently ushered a flock of 34 Curlew from the mud flats.

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A flock of 170 sleeping Common Shelduck and a detached Ruddy Shelduck below the Sluice Gates on the Mersey estuary side. A begging juvenile Oystercatcher was half begging for food and at the same tide probing the soft earth. Two flocks of c700 Black-tailed Godwit were reluctant to be shifted my the incoming water with a lot of shuffling and wing stretching.

The Weaver estuary was rather quiet but 4 Common Sandpiper, 7 Lapwing and 17 Great Crested Grebe excluding an 18th bird on the Weaver Bend.

Walking back along Brook Furlong Lane and a juvenile Bullfinch, Willow and Chiffchaff and Whitethroat could be seen and heard in the hedgerows.

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A visit to No.6 tank would on a normal August day be eagerly anticipated but the prolonged periods of dry weather (with little rain to make a difference) and the lack of sludge pumping into the tank has resulted in a wader free zone. The only birds of note being a Little Ringed Plover, 3 Common and 4 Black-headed Gull. The two juvenile Marsh Harrier were constantly calling to each other over the area.

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The only puddle with enough water was enough to bring in 2 bathing juvenile Yellow and 2 Pied Wagtail. A pair of juvenile Reed Warbler and Sedge Warbler were edging down the reed stems to quench their thirst.

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Butterflies were a plenty and Small Tortoiseshell, Red Admiral, Comma, Painted Lady, Large and Small White, Gatekeeper, Meadow Brown and a few Common Blue were all on the wing. Also noted were Emperor Dragonfly and Ruddy Darter.

Observer and images: WSM.

03.08.18. Birdlog.

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A short walk along the River Weaver early this evening. Not much of note on the river apart from 4 Great Crested and 2 Little Grebe. The duck numbers were low with just a few Tufted Duck, Mallard and Common Shelduck. Also noted were 2 Common Sandpiper, 5 Redshank, 4 Oystercatcher and a flock of Lapwing at the river’s edge and Curlew could be heard out on the salt marsh.

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A distant Marsh Harrier was seen flying over the Mersey estuary towards Hale lighthouse. There were c400 Canada Goose on the fields near to Marsh Farm and a Brown Hare was attempting to be inconspicuous sat amongst them.

4 Common Swift motored through the area.

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Several of the smaller dragonflies were noted during my walk.

Observer and images: Paul Ralston.

01.08.18. Birdlog.

With No.6 tank a mere dried out puddle it was to the secluded pool that drew me this evening on. A jittery Green Sandpiper nervously tiptoed along the edge of the pool before flying away and immediately returning to settle for the duration of my stay and providing some excellent views.

An adult Little Ringed Plover was equally confiding and alongside some juvenile Pied and 2 Yellow Wagtail provided a tidy size comparison to those passerines (they really are small plovers).

A couple of juvenile Marsh Harrier were constantly circling over the area testing out their new wings.

A small (200) Starling murmuration didn’t really make an impression and 8 Raven loitering along a fence line weren’t up to much either. A Common Swift was heading south at dusk while numerous juvenile Swallow, Sand and House Martin were over the Canal Pools.

Observer and images: WSM.