26.01.22. Birdlog.

There were 3 Ring-necked Parakeet, c50 Lesser Redpoll, a summer plumaged Great Crested Grebe and a drake Northern Shoveler, a pair of Gadwall and 11Tufted Duck around or on the lake at Phoenix Park, Runcorn while over at the boating lake in Heath Park was a colour marked (283A) Black-headed Gull ringed at the same site in Nov’21 – per Emily Traynor.

A couple of Short-eared Owl tussled with a couple of Western Marsh Harrier on Frodsham Marsh this evening.- per Gary Powell.

23.01.22. Birdlog.

I undertook my Ince WeBs count this afternoonwhere I found the missing Western Cattle Egret flock which were hiding at the back of the pig farm along the Manchester Ship Canal, 3 birds in total. There were 15 Little Egret noted and 2 Great Egret were seen, 1 dropped down on to the construction site and a 3rd bird was seen on Ince salt marsh. A mass of Northen Lapwings c3500¬†were on the stubble alongside the Holpool Gutter, but no sign of the European Golden Plover flock from yesterday. Canada Goose were in good numbers on the salt marsh with smaller numbers of Pink-footed Goose, an odd looking hybrid Canada X Greylag was amongst the herd.I checked the Gowy Meadows on my way home where both Greylag and Canada Goose were in one flock, while the next field held a flock of Pink-footed Goose, one bird wearing a neck collar (VOA), details to follow…

Observer: Paul Ralston.

We took a walk along Hare’s Lane this morning where the Green Sandpiper were not to be found in any of their usual haunts. The fields on Lordship Marsh just below the south east corner of No.4 tank harboured 24 Whooper Swan, however the family of Bewick’s Swan here yesterday went AWOL.

Wigeon and Curlew feeding side by side.

The area of migration had 32 Eurasian Wigeon, several Gadwall, numerous Eurasian Teal and Northern Shoveler. About 45 Eurasian Curlew were busy probing the soggy fields for worms while masses of Northern Lapwing were whirling about the area. Small skeins of Pink-footed Goose were flying over.

No.6 tank had 11 Common Pochard, several Tufted Duck, 12 Northern Pintail, c300 Eurasian Teal and 51 Common Shelduck.

A lone Black-tailed Godwit joined the 16 Common Moorhen in the flood fields off Moorditch Lane.

Observers: JS & WSM (videos).

22.01.22. Birdlog.

A collective assesment from Frodsham Marsh today incorporating my WeBs count for the marsh is included. The herd of Whooper Swan have increased by five adults to 26 birds out by the westbound carriageway of the M56 on Lordship Marsh (PR). Along Lordship Lane the family of 4 Bewick’s Swan had returned in fields below the south east corner of No.4 tank (WSM).

Frodsham Score had 3 Great Egret and a handful of Littles with small numbers of Pink-footed Goose moving about (there were two dead on No.6 tank presumably under suspicious circumstances).

No.6 tank had a female Common Goldeneye with 12 Tufted Duck, 11 Common Pochard, 6 Northern Pintail, 31 Northern Shoveler, 25 Common Shelduck, 430 Eurasian Teal and 34 Mallard. Also present were 112 Black-tailed Godwit.

No.3 tank including the mitigation pools, Canal Pools, ‘phalarope pool’ and the ‘splashing pool’ had 65 Eurasian Teal with 21 Northern Shoveler, 98 Eurasian Coot and c340 Canada Goose. Twenty Common Raven made short work of a dead sheep abandoned there. Another Raven lay dead in the field…makes you wonder?

A flock of c2000 European Golden Plover were on Ince Marsh Fields with in excess of 3000 Northern Lapwing in the area. A flock of 34 Black-tailed Godwit flew over.

Hare’s Lane again produced the wintering 3 Green Sandpiper in a much smaller pool than their previous one which is drying out fast.

The fields were buzzing with both Fieldfare and Redwing taking advantage of the flooded fields bringing up the worms. At Marsh Farm an adult Mediterranean Gull flew over (MG).

At dusk a watch from and along the Weaver Bend saw 3 Short-eared Owl quartering the wooded former I.C.I sludge tank. The Weaver Estuary had 10 Mute Swan, 4 Great Crested Grebe, 140 Tufted Duck, 26 Common Goldeneye, 300 Canada Goose and 16 Gadwall.

Observers: Paul Ralston, Mark Gibson, and WSM (videos).

17.01.22. Birdlog.

Four Short-eared Owl hunting the area by the Weaver Bend.

Observer: Gary Powell.

20.01.22. Birdlog.

A look from the bottom of Smithy Lane across Lordship Marsh where 257 Pink-footed Goose were gathered to feed with c67 Eurasian Curlew. Further out by Hill view Farm were the herd of Whooper Swan.

We took a hike along Moorditch Lane out to he ‘phalarope pool’ with a small mixture of Eurasian Teal and Northern Shoveler. Two of the three Green Sandpiper were again by Hare’s Lane.

No.6 tank was rather low key but a flock of 135 Black-tailed Godwit were the largest flock of the year on this sludge tank.

A look over the horse paddock and tens of Redwing feeding on the frosty grass. Continuing along Brook Furlong Lane we looked across to the Weaver Bend and the Lum where a Little Egret was still present. The surprise of the evening was a Long-eared Owl perched out on the edge of a thicket.

Observers:JS & WSM.

A Short-eared and a Barn Owl hunting the fields by the Ship Street entrance to the marsh at dusk.

Observer: Gary Powell.

19.01.22. Birdlog.

No.6 tank.

A Brambling with 30 on Lordship Lane. Also 2 Green Sandpiper along Hare’s Lane. Large numbers of Pink-footed Goose heading overhead.

Observer: Nicholas Turner.

An evening visit in the failing light after work produced skeins of Pink-footed Goose with vast numbers of gulls heading to the Mersey Estuary too. A Little Egret was feeding at the Lum with several Eurasian Teal.

Earlier the resident Whooper Swan is still present at Spike Island, Widnes with 18 Tufted Duck on the Wet Dock on site. Close by was Common Chiffchaff and a report of a Firecrest from 15.01.22.

The first daffodils and snowdrops were emerging today.

Observer: WSM.

16.01.22. Birdlog.

Green Sandpiper one of three birds.

We wandered out onto the marsh with a brief stop on Hare’s Lane where again the three Green Sandpiper were still feeding happily together on a different pool than yesterday. A male European Stonechat was perched close by.

The herd of Whooper Swan were back by the M56 on Lordship Marsh and five Mute Swan were in their usual place.

The ‘phalarope pool’ had Eurasian Teal and Northern Shoveler with 84 Eurasian Coot on the banks of the Canal Pools.

Again No.6 tank had much reduced numbers of ducks with the highlight again a Common Pochard numbering 78 birds.

A pair of Peregrines.

A pair of Peregrine were dining out on the lip of the blue topped chimney at Weston Point.

Observers: JS & WSM (video).

A walk to the Weaver Bend this morning where 5 European Stonechat, numerous Common Raven, 16 Mute Swan, 150 Common Redshank and 200 Northern Lapwing.

Observer: Paul Ralston.

A couple of Short-eared Owl were at the Weaver Bend.

Observer: Gary Powell.

15.01.22. Birdlog.

Whooper Swans.

I called in at Ince at midday where 10 Little Egret were feeding with the pigs in the mud. A selection of the usual ducks were at Goldfinch Meadows LNR

In excess of 1000 Pink-footed Goose at Creyers Lane and Greylag Goose over at Hobs Lane with at least two partially obscured Russian White-fronted Goose.

Observer: Paul Ralston.

I set off early for a walk around the marsh with a brief stop off at Hare’s Lane for the Green Sandpiper, but I drew a blank. A couple of contact calling Common Chiffchaff were hiding in the trackside ditches.

My walk along Lordship Lane produced the herd of 22 Whooper Swan and 5 Mute. I returned back to Hare’s Lane and the flooded fields there now held 3 Green Sandpiper happily feeding together.

The fields of No.3 tank had both Northern Lapwing and European Golden Plover and nearby were Eurasian Teal and Northern Shoveler. The first lamb of the year was early by a week from last year.

No.6 tank had 52 Common Pochard being the highlight and the Norfolk wing tagged Western Marsh Harrier flew through.

Observer: WSM (videos).

14.01.22. Birdlog.

male Crossbill.

We took a walk along Station Road, Delamere this morning pausing at Blakemere where a colour marked Herring Gull did its best to make sure it hide the ring combination. The Northern Lapwing were having a siesta on the frozen mere with some comical Common Snipe doing their dancing on Ice routine as they skated between resting spots.

The cluster of Common Goosander were at the western edge of the mere which had patches of open water.

female Crossbill.

Walking through Barnsbridge car park we headed up the Cheshire Loop to the new forest lodge area. After a late lunch we slowly made our way back when a flock Siskin flew overhead and settled atop a tree quickly followed by c15 Common Crossbill which gave us some brilliant views.

Observers: JS & WSM (videos).

13.01.22. Birdlog.

An early morning walk in crisp icy conditions with open waters frozen overnight.

The two Green Sandpiper wintering in a flood field close to Hares Lane were waiting for the morning sunshine to thaw enough for them to feed.

My walk took me along Lordship Lane where the field alongside the track had an addition of one more Whooper Swan which brings the herd to 22 birds. The Bewick’s were not present while I was there.

No.6 tank was thawing out by the time I got to view across its waters. A much smaller amount of ducks were obvious by their absence.

I carried along to view across the Weaver Valley and a collective count of 5 European Stonechat and 5 Common Chiffchaff.

Green Sandpipers.

Observer: WSM (image and video).

09.01.22. Birdlog.

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We took a circular walk around No.6 tank starting off along Hares Lane with the flooded fields holding several tens of Eurasian Curlew and Black-headed Gull.

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Curlews, Mute and Pink-footed Geese.

The Bewick’s Swan family of four were still to be found in a field alongside Lordship Lane. The surrounding fields were busy with sveral hundred Pink-footed Goose and Eurasian Curlew. The Whooper Swan herd were either asbent or hiding behind the distant hedgerows.

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Lordship Lane.

The ‘phalarope pool’ had a few Northern Shoveler and the scrape pools in the middle of No.3 tank had 2-300 Eurasian Teal.

The blue topped chimney out over the Weaver Estuary was supporting a big female Peregrine.

Observers: JS & WSM (images 1-4).

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Meadow Pipit.
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Little Egret.

I called in at Ince where Meadow Pipit, Linnet and Pied Wagtail were numerous with 10 Little Egret being amongst the pigs at the pig farm along Marsh Lane. There was no sign of any Cattle Egret for a change.

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A herd of c1500 Pink-footed Goose were in field along Cryers Lane.

Observer: Paul Ralston (images 5-7).