Monday, 8 October 2012

Crossens Marsh and Hesketh Out Marsh

Today we were out on the Ribble saltmarsh again, collecting invertebrates with pitfall traps. It's a tough day out on a warm day like today, dressed in waders, carrying a heavy load, zig-zagging your way across a saltmarsh full of a tangle of vegetation, and crossed by ditches and pools and large patches of sticky mud. We put down 40 traps on Crossens Marsh (which is basically the seaward side of the RSPB Marshside reserve) and another 40 on RSPB Hesketh Out marsh.

There were plenty of birds about, especially Wigeon, Teal and Pink-footed Geese. At Crossens we saw a Peregrine, but Hesketh Out Marsh was best, with a dashing Merlin across the car park and away over the sea wall, whilst on the marsh itself we flushed many Snipe and 2 Jack Snipe. There were also 8 Little Egrets on the marsh. At Marshside I had a wander around the old sand washing plant, but the only small birds I could find apart from the Robins and Blue Tits were about 4 Goldcrests.

Marshside with hundreds of Wigeon and Crossens Marsh.

Sea Aster Aster tripolium in seed on Crossens Marsh and Large-flowered Evening Primrose Oenothera glazioviana at Marshside.

Hesketh Out Marsh looking good. This was farm land as recently as 6 years ago.

Glasswort on Hesketh Out Marsh.

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