BIRDING THE LUNE ESTUARY, THE UPLANDS OF BOWLAND AND BEYOND

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CLOUGHA PIKE UNTIL RECENT YEARS THE BOWLAND STRONGHOLD FOR THE STONECHAT. PETE WOODRUFF.

Monday, 22 December 2008

Good Birding....

....bad weather, which turned on JB and I in just the same way that it did on Friday last, but before we finally let it grind us down....

At Conder Green a Stonechat NEVER fails to please me, also a Greenshank in the Conder channel. It was good to find the wintering Common Sandpiper on Conder Pool before flying off to the creeks. Eight drake Pochard on Glasson bowl means the number slowly increasing but a female never in sight. On the Lune Estuary there were several thousand waders, wildfowl, and gull's which JB has already comprehensively reported on the LDBWS website. My notes include a Little Egret below Waterloo Cottage, and (by way of a change for me) I noted at least 400 Common Gull here today whilst looking for a Med Gull. From Bodie Hill c.80 Goldeneye is an ever increasing number of this species on the River Lune here. A 'few' Redwing were still around on Moss Lane.

At this point of the proceedings we almost both agreed to throw in the towel in a miserable low mist and heavy drizzle, but decided to continue on to Pilling where at least we did have the reward of a Barn Owl on Fluke Hall Lane, an area never seen before in both our records. On Pilling Marsh the usual and now expected Little Egret - but just the one seen today - and c.500 Pink-footed Geese brought the day to a positively miserable end in a damp pea soup.

Visitors to the LDBWS website and RBA pager owners will have noticed mention of a frustrating 'grebe' which instantly appeared to large for Black-necked/Slavonion Grebe and to small for Great-crested Grebe which 'should' have made it a Red-necked Grebe. John's account indicates the frustration which followed and until/unless someone reports otherwise - hopefully tomorrow - the claim remains a firm 'possible' only.

I never took a Barn Owl pic in my life but the Tawny Owl above was an excellent find a couple of years ago in the Forest of Bowland.
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