I started this morning’s walk at Brook Furlong Lane where a smart male s>urasian Sparrowhawk sped past me at knee height and tried in vain to catch one of the many Fieldfare and Redwing that were feeding in the bushes.
On the Weaver River a small flock of Tufted Duck joined the usual duck species and a group of 9 European Goldeneye which were all females.A herd of 12 Mute Swan and c300 Canada Goose which were sheltering on the river away from the shooting parties out on the salt marsh.
A large mixed flock of Northern Lapwing and European Golden Plover were moving about on the Mersey estuary with several Common Buzzard keeping them on the move.
A wintering Common Sandpiper flew east along the Manchester Ship Canal and a single Great Crested Grebe was fishing and managed to catch a small fish.
The Canal Pools held many more Canada Goose with c50 Eurasian Coot, Eurasian Teal, Northern Shoveler, Mallard and Tufted Duck.
A pair of Stonechat were along the path and a flock of c60 Eurasian Curlew passed overhead towards Lordship Marsh.
The sound of gunfire put a mass of Canada Goose into the air which soon was followed by several hundred Pink-footed Goose and the Eygptian Goose flock were with the Ruddy Shelduck in with them.
The stubble fields alongside the Holpool Gutter were empty apart from a few Eurasian Curlew and Northern Lapwing.
Walking along Lordship Lane and Reed Bunting, Chaffinch and European Goldfinch were commonplace and were being shadowed by another Eurasian Sparrowhawk.
Looking over Lordship Marsh from the junction of No.4 and No.6 tanks and the Whooper Swan herd could be seen in the far distance and back in their winter fields after being disturbed yesterday.
A Great Spotted Woodpecker flew over No.6 and another bird was seen on No.4 tank.
A Marsh Harrier was hunting the reed bed on No.6 and another pair of Stonechat were on the path edge. A family group of 5 Mute Swan joined the usual ducks on the tank with c80 Eurasian Curlew and European Golden Plover were feeding on No.3 tank.
Observer and images: Paul Ralston.