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.

Thursday, 8 April 2010

Famous Last Words....


....'but the weather needs to be good to do this so here's hoping'....were my closing words in my post yesterday when I claimed to be going primarily to check out the Stonechat situation on Harrisend and Hawthornthwaite Fells. Well the weather today couldn't possibly have been further removed from spring and was a pathetic heavy low mist cloud, never came daylight day, and the cold wind persists.


With JB today we were at Conder Green to find a Greenshank and Common Sandpiper just downstream from the railway ridge with a Kestrel hovering over it. On Conder Pool a Spotted Redshank as my modest photography above shows, with the bird quickly transforming into its unique black summer plumage, 3 Goldeneye are still on here, and a Little Grebe poses the question....is this the only one left from the twelve present on the pool prior to the 'ice age', 3 Canada Geese and 46 Mute Swans most of which came in from Jeremy Lane whilst we were here. At Glasson Dock JB checked out the canal basin where I noted 3 Swallows over before going to check the Lune Estuary which turned out to be a virtual 'grave yard' with 2 Goosander noted, but c.60 Redshank and 7 Black-headed Gulls took my eye in an apparent feeding frenzy in one of the channels, I couldn't help but wonder on what.


At Cockersands I found a Wheatear as another modest photograph shows, my 15th since the first (three) 400m up Clougha on Tuesday 23 March....where are all the Wheatears? Also to note was a pretty decent count of at least 120 Ringed Plover a bird noted for being a fairly common passage migrant, but an uncommon and declining resident breeder, c.220 Dunlin were also noted, and a pair of Eider were off Crook Farm. Otherwise Cockersands was regarded by me as being bloody hard work and that's not looking for 'rarities' but looking for 'common stuff'.


On Pilling Marsh, at least 3,000 Pink-footed Geese were still on here, also 3 Little Egret, a Little Grebe was heard calling on the pool here. From Fluke Hall Lane up to 45 Golden Plover seen included a few Northern race birds as the last of my modest pics for today shows with the second bird from the left of this fragment of the flock and a bird which I actually double checked - with much initial excitement - for Pacific Golden Plover....but I was dreaming! The only gain for a visit to Fluke Hall was that of 14 Linnet seen from just west of the slipway behind Ridge Farm.

Quite honestly a truly rubbish day weather-wise but an excellent birding day around 'the local'. 

3 comments:

Phil said...

Sorry you missed the wheats and phylosscs at LE Pete. If its any consolation the wheats were very mobile and the warblers sang intermittently in the cold and wind.

Warren Baker said...

Weather looks to be improving pete, time for that 'chat hunt' !

Pete Woodruff said...

Thanks for comments Phil.

A little more 'joy' today, but only a 'little' I must say but the post not done yet so will let you see what I'm waffling about when you next look in to read it.

Thanks also to you Warren for comments but you need to read above what I've said to Phil.