After work and a walk along the Painted Lady Butterfly littered track above No.6 tank and away from the pettiness of the day.
A parent Avocet shielding its chicks from a marauding gull.
The summering Black-tailed Godwit flock exceeded 500 birds in the recently rain supplemented water level on No.6 tank. Also present was a scattered flock of 15 Avocet with another 4 elsewhere (excluding two mobile chicks). The parent Ringed Plover pair still had 3 chicks which fed within the godwit flocks on the edge of the muddy areas. Two Dunlin were a little late moving north.
Ducks were back to good numbers with an increase of Common Pochard numbering 13 drakes and two ducks. The arrival of a flock of 39 Common Teal were possibly part of a group displaced by a big tide out on the river and brought a Green-winged across the river to Carr Lane pools? Also present were 34 Gadwall, 23 Tufted Duck, 4 Shoveler and a pair of Great Crested Grebe.
The 6th wind turbine is set in place on No.4 tank and awaiting its third rotor blade.
Observer: WSM (images 1-5).
Earlier Colin paid a visit and sent his sightings here:
I paid a visit this afternoon to the marsh. Although it was quiet it was nevertheless enjoyable. Whitethroat giving alarm calls obviously with young nearby. Reed and Sedge Warbler where much in evidence. One Common Buzzard was the only raptor noted with Raven seen. Six Avocet were a pleasant sight especially with two young feeding happily after their parents saw off a Gadwall.
Observer: Colin Butler (images 6-8).
Locally a Red Kite was over Malpas Crescent, Runcorn at 8.00 am per Don Weedon.
A few additional images. The above from 21st where a segment of the fourth tower turbine is lifted into position…
…and viewed from the north banks of No.6 tank.
The rotor hub is lifted into position.
A flock of Black-tailed Godwits wheeled around after being disturbed by a passing raptor with the turbines situated on Lordship Marsh and the Growhow Works beyond.
The third turbine erected with the rotor hub being fastened into position.
The hub being hoisted.
A closer view…
…and an even closer view.
The finished product, one of two presently on No.1 (Cell 1) tank.
The Weaver Estuary and one of the turbines towering over it.
Some images added on and taken 29.05.16.
The above (three) images are of the turbines situated on Lordship Marsh.
All images by WSM.
A few views of the wind turbines from a different perspective across the river at Hale Head.
The third turbine tower is erected over on Helsby marshes.
The same turbine but from across the river at Hale Head.
The first rotor blade inserted.
Then the third rotor blade finishes it off.
A view of the Helsby Marshes from No.6 tank at dusk.
A view from Townfield Lane, Frodsham of the turbines.
All images WSM except image 9 which was taken by David Stewart.
A series of more recent images of the first and second wind turbines and artistically captured by Tony Broome (images 1-4).
The above images show the installation of the second turbine situated close to Marsh Farm, No.1 tank (Cell 1).
These images by Paul Crawley (images 5-6) show pylons marching across the marsh and then a more modern power source at dawn with the illuminating lights at Weston Point.
The first windmill is erected and towers over No.1 tank.
Imposing and viewable from across the river at Pickerings Pasture/ Hale Head and obviously from much closer to home.
Viewed from No.6 tank.
The orange cranne is installing the second tower also on No.1 tank and much closer to Marsh Farm.
Marsh Farm is at the bottom left of the photograph.
If you have been birding, walking, cycling or generally enjoying the benefits of being out and about on Frodsham Marsh and you are approached by Servo Security and they tell you that you are not permitted to be on the marsh tracks. Please ask them for their i.d/name and write down their details including vehicle registration. I will forward you complaints to the local authority and the wind farm committee. Please bare in mind under no circumstances is anyone permitted into the compound work areas.
A slow amble along Moorditch Lane where we bumped into Arthur H who we hadn’t seen for a while. It was a pleasant surprise and after a chat we continued our walk along Moorditch Lane. The contractors have again dug up the ramp track to No.5 tank after finding some faulty wiring so bypassing them we continued along Moorditch to join MacDuff at the junction of Lordship Lane.
The flooded stubble field close to the model aircraft flying field was holding a flock of Black-tailed Godwit and at least 12 Whimbrel were with them. Nearby, a Whinchat was perched up in the stubble but soon after found the barb wire fence much to its liking and sat out for long periods. A couple of Swift flew over heading north.
Just a few metres over the banks on No.6 tank were 6 Whimbrel which joined up with 500 Black-tailed Godwit, 120 Redshank, 4 Avocet and a couple of Ringed Plover. The flooded areas were alive with Common Shelduck and in comparison other duck species were in much lower numbers. Walking back along Moorditch Lane the banks facing south-east were alive with warblers and Whitethroat, Willow, Sedge and Chiffchaff all vied with each other to out sing themselves. There were several hundred hirundines hawking low over the track and in the late evening it started to have a feel that summer was almost upon us.
The partial leucistic Jackdaw was again present in the corvid flock roaming around the flooded fields adjacent to the M56 off Moorditch Lane.
A Smooth Newt was watched to climb out of the water channel into the area of one of the culverts. Arthur mentioned that he had seen at least three good-sized eels here last week.
As featured yesterday the first instalment of the wind farm is gaining some notoriety. I thought the crane was very high but compared to the height of this machine even without its wings we’re in for an interesting period locally.
Observers: Frank Duff, Sparky, WSM (all images).
Stepping out this morning before the change in the weather from Ince Berth around No.4 tank and through to No.6. A selection of warblers including Whitethroat, Blackcap and Chiffchaff were in full voice as them sang along the Manchester Ship Canal path. A Common Sandpiper crossed the canal opposite the berth. On the canal itself and Tufted Duck, Gadwall, Mallard and Common Shelduck were loitering around. Out on the Frodsham Score both Raven and black-backed gulls fed side by side on the carcass of a calf with a couple of Common Buzzard on standby.
A couple of Marsh Harrier were seen quartering the reed beds and a Sparrowhawk flew overhead. Walking along the path around No.6 and 8 Avocet were feeding on a scrape near the mitigation pool on No.3 tank, while six held good numbers of Common Shelduck and Tufted Duck with a few Shoveler and Pochard. The waders were made up of a few hundred Black-tailed Godwit and a smaller flock of Dunlin and Redshank. There were 4 more Avocet seen here.
Walking along Lordship Lane both Sedge and Reed warbler were holding territory and a Kestrel hunted the bank. Back along the canal and Wheatear were keeping company with Whinchat.
An additional note from yesterday evening involving my walk on the Gowy Meadows which produced 5 Short-eared Owl, 3 Whinchat and several Wheatear.
Observer: Paul Ralston (image 1).
The first of the Wind Farm towers with hub attached as seen from Weston.
Images 2-4 by WSM.
The scale of the wind farm on Frodsham Marsh is hinted at by this crane hoisting components for the installation of just one of the turbines. This one is in the north-east corner of No.1 tank (Cell 1) overlooking the Weaver Estuary.
27th April saw the hoisting of the first tower (stanchion) base presumably it will come in 2-3 parts?
All images by WSM.
One of the towers sat on a low loader ready for erecting as from the banks of No.5 tank (Cell 5).
Wind turbine rotor blades.
The rotor blades lay ready for installation close to the power sub-station on No.5 tank.
The sub-station, rotor blades, Nacelle and hubs ready and in place.
The rotor blades in situ on No.1 tank.
Wind turbine hub and bases.
The hoisting crane ready to erect wind turbines in the next few months. To give you some scale to the height of the turbines on No.1 tank.
All images by WSM.
The arrival this week of the first wind turbine blades to Frodsham Marsh got local and national media coverage so a few images taken today including a video (upload later).
Components and blades in place and ready for assembly and how close they are to Frodsham village (the green swath on the hillside and the house to the left is my childhood home at Churchfields with St Laurence Church above).
A view looking south-east to Frodsham from the north banks of No.5 tank (or cell 5 if you’re from Peel Energy).
Components ferried in on a truck on No.5 tank.
Turbines and cranes on No.5 tank (Cell 5).
Turbine blades aligned for installation on No.1 tank (Cell 1).
Blue-topped chimney at Weston Point and components on No.1 tank.
Images 1-13 by WSM.
Images 14 -15 by Paul Crawley.
A short video of a contractor delivering a rotor blade for one of the wind turbines on the marsh. https://vimeo.com/163104366