Another walk along the River Weaver and Manchester Ship Canal today. A small pleasure boat made its way along the Weaver as far as the ship canal so not a lot to be seen due to disturbance. The 3 Dunlin were still in the company of a couple of Common Ringed Plover but were flushed and moved out to the Mersey Estuary, at least 4 Common Sandpiper were noted along the river and the canal. There were several family parties of Pied Wagtail were feeding at the waters edge.
Looking over the Mersey Estuary and again c3000 Canada Goose were out on the mudflats with several hundred Black-taileded Godwit, 15 Pied Avocet, c30 Eurasian Curlew present and gulls were in their hundreds, mostly Black-headed and 4 Grey Heron.
The Mute Swan pairs on the ‘Canal Pools’ have 4 cygnets, the first for a couple of years on the marsh.
An early Northern Wheatear was seen near the dredger berth and made its way over to the ‘Canal Pools’ where better views of it were had by me. Eight Common Raven and a Common Buzzard were busy feeding on a sheep carcase in the long grass allowing a close approach before seeing me and making a hasty exit.
The ‘phalarope pool’ held several Mallard, Eurasian Teal, Gadwall and a single Black-tailed Godwit while No.6 tank was a wader free zone. A Western Marsh Harrier hunted over the reed bed.
Observer: Paul Ralston (images 2-4).
The highlight of today’s walk around the marsh was a European Nuthatch (a local scarse bird) which flew south along the track at the east end of No.6 tank. Also seen was a
Western Yellow Wagtail on No.3 tank and 8 Common Sandpiper were along the
Weaver Estuary. A Grasshopper Warbler was reeling along Brook Furlong Lane.
Observer: Alyn Chambers.
We took a stroll around No.6 tank where we stopped by the ‘phalarope pool’ were we exchange pleasantries with Guy and Lou who were cycling from from deepest Cheshire. All the ducks mentioned earlier by Paul were still present including mother Gadwall with her six ducklings. A 1st summer Western Marsh Harrier flew over and another passed by sometime later. The highlight was a Little Egret which dropped in to feed and on this occasion didn’t fly away as soon as iy her us.
There were again plenty of butterflies along the lane and a Black-tailed Chaser dragonfly was idyling on the track by the viewing area above No.6 tank. The tank was rather quiet but 61 Tufted Duck, 2 Common Pochard, and single numbers of Eurasian Teal, Common Shelduck and Northern Shoveler.
That walk completes 53 klm (each) offsetting our carbon footprint on the marsh this week. #savingtheworldsoyoucanenjoyit
Observers: JS & WSM (images 1 & 5-8).