Tuesday, 17 March 2009

Wot No Wheatear !

Well yes....five actually.

With JB today as ever we started at Conder Green where we had to miss Conder Pool (what....and LRP expected any day now) as RSPB staff have apparently made a start to erecting a screen and planting a hedgerow which will obviously restrict viewing - as we know it today - considerably, a small price to pay in order to give the birds protection they need and deserve from disturbance....well I'm all in favour of that. Despite all this a Spotted Redshank, and a Greenshank were noted in the creek.

On the canal basin at Glasson Dock 2 pair of Great - crested Grebe were noted. And on the estuary for the note book, another Greenshank, and a Little Grebe, whilst wader numbers were around 11 Black - tailed Godwit, 15 Bar - tailed Godwit, and 20 Knot. Unless he saw more than I did, JB's sightings on the LDBWS will indicate a solitary Goldeneye and a 'handful' of Wigeon here today.

The undoubted highlights of the day were 2 male Wheatear off Bodie Hill. On the sight of these two birds a thought ran through my mind, that the day I stop getting a 'buzz' from the first Wheatear of the year I'll take up stamp collecting....but I won't be holding my breath on that one.

At Cockersands another 3 Wheatear were in the field behind the now rebuilt derelict building opposite Bank Houses. This is the place I usually find my first bird of the year but Glasson Marsh took that prize this time. Also to note, a male Merlin put up 95 Golden Plover in a field and glided over the hedge at around 50mph in front of the car, also c.20 Tree Sparrow, and 9 Eider drifted past the lighthouse on the incoming tide. From Moss Lane 32 Whooper Swan's remain in the field whilst the Bewick's Swan's were 'absent'.

On Pilling Marsh c.3,500 Pink - footed Geese and a Little Egret seen. A walk for me towards Cockers Dyke from Fluke Hall surprisingly didn't produce a single Wheatear nor anything else for that matter and from here on the Little Owl on Gulf Lane was the only bird to find its way into the book. This bird incidentally poses like no other Little Owl poses so if you 'do' photography and need Little Owl in your album pay this little blighter a visit for a result.
Well at least todays pic is appropriate as it is of a few of the 95 Golden Plover put up by the Merlin at Cockersands.


Chris Stevenson said...

I live at Lower Bank House at Cockerham Sands and I am very envious as I have never seen/identified half the birds you do. Admittedly I don't get out that much and have virtually no birding skills but I have never managed to see a Sparrowhawk or half the waders you have. However, 2 barn owls have joined the bank houses little owl on occasion recently - popping in to the barn next door. Best Wishes and keep going with the blog - it keeps me well informed when sat at my desk at work!

Pete Woodruff said...

Many thanks for this Chris. I visit Cockersands at least twice weekly and must call on you if this is OK. I'm intrigued by your Barn Owl info which has been mentioned to me previously of late and which I must follow up.

Please feel free to comment on the blog in the future.


Chris Stevenson said...

Thanks Pete that'll be great. Its a shame that with working full-time I can't get out to see the local wildlife much but there is always the weekend and the increasingly light evenings.

David Cookson said...

Hello Pete, saw and photographed two male Wheatears half way down Fluke Hall Lane on the 16th March.
Regards Dave

Pete Woodruff said...

This is both quite amazing and an appreciated contribution David. Amazing because I came across your website as a result of visiting Brian Raffertys which I follow, and this evening was/am going to link it on this blog if I can.

Please always feel free to comment on everything/anything, positive or otherwise as it all goes to make the thing interesting and will also go towards enthusing me to keep it up and running.