Tuesday, 19 January 2010

Newton Lake

Goosander 15 (9 males, 6 females)
Teal 100
Gadwall 6 (5 males, 1 female)

Saturday, 16 January 2010

Eccleston Mere

Despite the thaw, there was still 95% ice cover at the mere, and only one small patch of water held all of the ducks, coots and a few Canada Geese. Highlight was these three Gadwall (2 males and a female).

Sunday, 10 January 2010

Eccleston Mere

Wigeon 1 drake
Lesser Redpoll 5 with 60 Goldfinches in SE corner.
Snipe 1
Kingfisher 2
Grey Wagtail 2


Saturday, 9 January 2010

Hilbre Island in the snow and ice

What a day to be on Hilbre! It was a struggle to get there at all of course, with snow and ice on the roads, and it was -6'C when I left home.

It was an amazing scene at West Kirby, with snow and ice on the beach stretching almost all the way to the island, and you could see where the tide had reached because of the depth of the snow (see the left hand photo of West Kirby shore, looking towards Red Rocks, below).

Often when I cross to Hilbre I'm worried about slipping on seaweed covered rocks, but today I was slipping on ice covered beach! Even the pond on the island was completely frozen.

There were good numbers of birds on the island, especially thrushes, with about 25 Fieldfare, 20 Redwings, 10 Song Thurshes and 5 Blackbirds. Other displaced birds included Snipe and Woodcock. The wintering Rock Pipit was still present at the north end, and maybe a second bird as well.

Star bird of the day for me was a female or immature Velvet Scoter off the north end for its second day. Also on the sea, a few Common Scoter, Red-breasted Mergansers.

Overhead, 35 Pink-footed Geese flew north east, and about 70 Lapwings headed in the opposite direction. Surprisingly, I only saw 2 Pale-bellied Brents and one Purple Sandpiper.

These kind of days are amongst the most beautiful if the year, and almost make up for the chaos of the last week!

Velvet Scoter: Merseyside 246

West Kirby shore looking towards Red Rocks, Hoylake.

Hilbre from Little Eye

The pond on Hilbre

The north end.

Sunday, 3 January 2010

Carr Mill Dam

Slavonian Grebe 1
Goldeneye 1 female

The Slavonian Grebe was a first for St Helens for me.

Eccleston Mere

Willow Tit 1 on feeder in SE corner
Kingfisher 1
Goldeneye 1 male


Saturday, 2 January 2010

Southport and Birkdale

Twite 55 on Birkdale beach
Short-eared Owl 6 Marshside
Merlin 1 Marshside
Peregrine 2 Marshside

Lots and lots of birds at Marshside as the 9.7m high tide approached at 12 noon. A really awesome spectacle.

Friday, 1 January 2010

Rainford Mosslands

Pink-footed Goose 3000+ on Reed's Moss
Little Owl 1 Old Coach Road
Tree Sparrow 3 Old Coach Road

Meadow Pipit ice skating with some turnips in Dairy Farm Road.

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