I was out this morning starting at Ince pools which were quiet with just 5 Mallard, 4 Tufted Duck, 8 Eurasian Coot, 3 Common Moorhen,1 Little Egret, 2 Grey Heron. The Barn Owl was again at the box entrance to its summer home.
Onward to the Manchester Ship Canal path and Common Chiffchaff and Blackcap were always vocal. Looking over Ince salt marsh which was also quiet with just a few Canada Goose, Common Shelduck and a single Little Egret. The Holpool Gutter held 12 Mallard, 3 Eurasian Coot, 1 Little Grebe and a Grey Wagtail with a beak full of insects. There were just 3 Northern Lapwing and a pair of agitated Eurasian Oystercatcher in the field alongside the gutter.
A male European Stonechat was flycatching near to the ‘splashing pool’ and Common Swifts, Barn Swallow and Sand Martin were hawking overhead. The ‘canal pools’ had 4 Mute Swan with 1 pair still sitting tight on their nest. Also 4 Tufted Duck and several Eurasian Coot were present, a single Common Sandpiper and a Little Ringed Plover were at the edge of the pool.
On a scrape on No.3 tank were two more Common Sandpiper and 3 Little Ringed Plover a single Common Ringed Plover and a Black-tailed Godwit were noted.
as I made my way back to my start a Western Marsh Harrier was hunting over No.4 and a juvenile Eurasian Cuckoo was seen in flight heading towards the ship canal path.
Observer: Paul Ralston (images).
After work I made my way to No.6 tank to watch the waders there. It was with some surprise to find a handful of Black-tailed Godwit, a single Dunlin, c110 Northern Lapwing and 4 Common Redshank. The Tufted Duck flock was fragmented with a grand total of 119 with 5 Common Pochard, 4 Northern Shovler, 21 Eurasian Teal, 6 Gadwall and 43 Mallard. A small raft of 8 Little Grebe and just one Common Gull in with a few Black-headed Gull made up a below par seesion. A Western Marsh Harrier was harrying things over the reed bed and a Little Egret was hunting the marsh.
The blue-topped chimney at Weston Point had two adult Peregrine.