An after work visit to the ‘phalarope pool’ revealed just one of the Common Redshank chicks which is gaining strength and size everytime I see it.
The pool was a little deviod of birdlife so I retraced my steps and spent sometime watching over No.6 tank. The Black-tailed Godwit flock of c550 birds was still present and Pied Avocet have 11 nests on the perilous soft mud. Ducks were back with a vengence with 13 Common Pochard, c80 Tufted Duck, 11 Eurasian Teal, 61 Mallard, 42 Common Shelduck, 6 Northern Shoveler and 2 Gadwall.
A female Western Marsh Harrier was perched up in her usual position. There were hundreds of Common Swift high over the marshes.
The hedgerow bordering the north bank of No.6 still has spindle bushes smothered with the webs and caterpillars of the Ermine moth.
Observer: WSM (images 1-8).
A small number of Pied Avocet chicks swam across the Weaver Bend. Gary also saw a Peregrine take one out of hundreds of 1st summer Black-headed Gulls on the bend.
Observer: Gary Worthington.
An early evening walk along Brook Furlong Lane and the Weaver Bend. A family of Blackcap were seen foraging in the bushes along the lane and the ‘mixed singer’ Willow Warbler was vocal in its usual area with Common Chiffchaff and Cetti’s Warbler were also seen and heard.
A juvenile European Stonechat was on the fence along the pipeline with European Goldfinch and Linnet were abundant with several young birds amongst them feeding on the grass seeds. Canada Goose were on the Manchester Ship Canal with a large number of young seeking safety in numbers. The Sand Martin colony may have failed to breed succesfully this year as only a couple of birds were near the nest site. Common Shelduck, Mallard and Gadwall were present in small numbers.
A herd of 45 Mute Swan were feeding at the river edge. The Pied Avocet were busy flying back and forth keeping the gulls away from their young. The hundreds of Common Swift from the weekend have moved on with just a handfull hawking over the river.
Observer: Paul Ralston (images 9-11).