BIRDING THE LUNE ESTUARY, THE UPLANDS OF BOWLAND AND BEYOND

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COVER CROP COCKERSAND. PETE WOODRUFF

Sunday, 30 November 2014

The Whizz.

Computer down at the moment so using KT's laptop to do a write up about a few birds I saw on Thursday during a quick whizz around.


Little Grebe Brian Rafferty  

I was treated to seeing 22 Little Grebe again at Conder Green equalling the record count made here on 4 November, 16 were on Conder Pool, and 6 were in the creeks where I noted c.80 Teal and a Little Egret. Otherwise the pool was pretty deserted with just seven other birds seen, 3 Teal, a drake Goosander, a Cormorant, and 2 Black-headed Gull seen. On the canal basin at Glasson Dock I noted up to 75 Tufted Duck


Greenfinch Ana Minguez

At Cockersands I counted 24 Greenfinch around the cover crops field. The tide was high and although as always it was good to be there, there was little of note to see. That said, estimates of 75 Turnstone and 250 Oystercatcher were seen on Plover Scar, with 3 Grey Plover of note. A lone drake Eider was off the scar, and I saw a Black-headed Gull in near full summer plumage complete with full hood. Four Whooper Swan were seen with Mute Swan in a distant inland field north of Bank End Farm. 

In relation to usual timescales....a quick whizz round!

Goldeneye.


Goldeneye Martin Jump

On Thursday I found not a single Goldeneye on the Lune Estuary, and with the exception of thirteen seen here on 14 November but not since, up to four on Conder Pool, and the occasional bird/s on the canal basin, I have found nothing significant this winter so far at a location noted as a 'hotspot' for the Goldeneye, with 122 the peak count in 2013.

Thanks to Brian for the brilliant shot of the Little Grebes at war, for the Greenfinch from Ana, and the Goldeneye from Martin, all much appreciated, even more so with a 'clik the pik'.

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Med Up Again....

....and the Jay is a winner in the end.

Mediterranean Gull. Copy Permitted.

Tuesday started well with an adult Mediterranean Gull on Conder Pool in company with up to 280 Black-headed Gull and 3 Common Gull. I decided to give myself a break from an accurate count but made a note of 9 Little Grebe including one in the creeks. Also on the pool, 4 Goldeneye, a Red-breasted Merganser, and a Little Egret.


  
Spotted Redshank. Pete Woodruff.

I saw a Spotted Redshank again in the creeks, the bird posed for me whilst I made one of my attempts to prove I can take a mean pic....but again failed miserably.

Pintail. Noushka Dufort. 

I decided on a trip down the A588 to look over the marsh at high tide from Pilling Lane Ends where conditions were excellent, my 'notes without numbers' were of several hundred Pintail, with a good number of Teal. Also of note, a small group of Grey Plover, and a few Black-tailed Godwit. Small birds included 2 Rock Pipit, with Skylark seen, and in excess of 80 Linnet with Twite in the mix. A Peregrine Falcon was on a distant post waiting to take to the wing and change the scenery, a few hundred Pink-footed Geese were in a field behind the embankment.
  
At Fluke Hall a family group of two adult and two juvenile Whooper Swan, on my way here I had seen 9 Whooper Swan with Mute Swan in a field opposite Sand Villa. Legging it to Cockers Dyke I saw at least 100 Twite and 9 Greenfinch noted.

Thanks to Noushka at 1000-Pattes for the excellent Pintail image. 

And Finally....


Jay Martin Jump  

The photograph above is one which Martin Jump regarded as his 'Photograph Of 2012'....Brilliant.

But congratulations go to Martin for the current winner of Birdguides 'Photo Of The Week'. I'm only too sorry I was unable to gain access to the original photograph of the Jay with a half swallowed acorn which can be seen HERE....Great stuff Martin, a well deserved award, and thank you once again for allowing me to use your images on Birds2blog.

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

The Distant White Goose....

....and some other birds.

Common Sandpiper Simon Hawtin

As I stepped onto the viewing platform at Conder Pool yesterday the Common Sandpiper was flying across to land on the near island, a Little Egret was the next bird seen stabbing at the waters edge taking small fry one after the other. Only 3 Goldeneye seen today, with a Red-breasted Merganser also noted. The final result of a few counts was of 15 Little Grebe including one in the creeks where I saw a Spotted Redshank.

On the canal basin at Glasson Dock 2 Goldeneye, 2 Little Grebe, and 42 Tufted Duck counted. On the Lune Estuary, although I wasn't counting here today, Bar-tailed Godwit and Golden Plover numbers appeared slightly down on last Wednesdays counts of 565 and 1,500 respectively. Eight Little Egret were seen without too much of a search, and 24 Cormorant were notable lined up along the waters edge.


Snow Goose Arkive

Distant on Colloway Marsh I picked out the recently reported Snow Goose with a small number of Pink-footed Geese, the bird appears to have a damaged wing and sadly not likely to be moving very far again unless it rides the tides.

At Cockersands the tide was at it's height and Plover Scar held no more than 25 waders, being 15 Oystercatcher and 10 Turnstone, but 2 Rock Pipit livened the place up. Up to 400 Curlew were in fields. A mix of 50 Wigeon and Teal were in the wide ditch along with 2 Little Egret. Fourteen Greenfinch were again around the cover crop field, and a pair of Red-breasted Merganser and a Great-crested Grebe were seen on the estuary.


Brown Hare Martin Jump   

I must check through my records for the Cockersands area, until I saw one yesterday I've not been seeing Brown Hare in recent months, a former stronghold here.

Thanks for the photographs Simon/Martin, much appreciated.

I read a 26 species report from Conder Estuary/Conder Pool including an amazing 6 Common Sandpiper plus seen yesterday!!

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Twite Twitch....Black Dip!

I decided to walk from Fluke Hall to Knott End and saw at least 150 Twite in the process. They were seen in four separate and mobile flocks, though on one occasion I was able to observe birds feeding in the long marsh grasses. 

The Twite is notorious for difficulty in reading rings on their short legs often seen in long grass, but one bird was identified as a Heysham ringed individual with its pale blue over metal ring on the right leg, and a white ring on the left leg which was presumably marked with a number impossible to read as is often the case and certainly was this time. 

Twite. Geoff Gradwell. 

Thanks to GG for the image above of the ringed - yes it is ringed - Twite which clearly illustrates the difficulties with this species. 

At Cockers Dyke I did a couple of sifts through c.300 Black-headed Gull to find nothing I couldn't identify with them, and noted c.150 Redshank and similar Lapwing, a single Black-tailed Godwit, a 'few' Meadow Pipit, and a Little Egret.  On my way back to Lancaster, I saw up to 2,000 Pink-footed Geese in a field on Lancaster Road from a moving car. 

I was amazed to find my car automatically turning left off the A588 to pull up of it's own accord at the viewing platform at Conder Pool....isn't that amazing! 

The count this time was of 17 Little Grebe, four of which were in the creeks where I saw a Spotted Redshank. Four Goldeneye and 15 Wigeon were also noted on Conder Pool, and I flushed a Snipe again upstream from the road bridge.

....and the Black Dip!


Black Redstart Marc Heath 

It would have been nice to see a Black Redstart on the walk along the coastal path probably in the Cockers Dyke area where it had been reported the day before. But I decided to do a U turn and go back to Fluke Hall effectively cutting my planned walk in half which turned out to be my mistake, but a mistake I wouldn't have made had I received the news earlier than I did, that the Black Redstart had been seen a few metres further down the coastal path just beyond my U turn.

I didn't get the news about the bird until late afternoon, it apparently having been seen late morning four and a half hours earlier at 11.30am....Hard luck, you dipped Mr Woodruff!

Thanks for the BR Marc, brilliant image of a brilliant bird. Thanks also to Bob Bushell for the excellent shot of the drake Goldeneye in the new header.

Friday, 21 November 2014

The Short Shift.

Keep on keeping on. It's all a bit repetitive and little new to get excited about, but it's godda be done. One thing you need to get acquainted with in birding are the 'blank' like days....but I'm predicting a big change to this very soon. Meanwhile all I managed on Wednesday was a short shift at Conder Green and Glasson Dock. 


Long-tailed Tit Warren Baker

I never fail to have the interest to keep tabs on the LG's on Conder Pool, and on Wednesday I counted 19 Little Grebe, 14 of which were on the pool, 3 in the creeks, and 2 upstream from the road bridge from where I also flushed 2 Snipe. Also on the pool, 4 Goldeneye, in the creeks a Spotted Redshank, and 8 Long-tailed Tit were in the car park at The Stork.

Notable on the Lune Estuary was 1,550 Golden Plover, 565 Bar-tailed Godwit, 15 Snipe, and respectable for the area, a count of 10 Red-breasted Merganser

A short shift....but much better than no shift at all!

Go birding....get historical.

Cockersands Abbey. Pete Woodruff.

As well as an excellent birding location, you can also take in a little history about Cockersands Abbey which was founded before 1184 as the Hospital of St Mary on the marsh belonging to Leicester Abbey. A significant relic in the Abbey is the still intact vaulted chapter house which was built in 1230. The abbey was dissolved in 1539.

I was attracted to a closer look at Cockersands Abbey recently when some late afternoon winter sun fell on the place....hence the 'clik the pik' photograph which from this angle unfortunately shows some modern day brickwork on the left side as we look at this image, nevertheless, an impressive historical ruin.

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Light My Fire!

I was tempted to call Mondays birding a bit dull and uneventful. I always try to keep negatives out of my birding....but it certainly didn't light my fire on Monday. 

At Conder Green, with determination I went through the grebes in the hope of getting them all on the water at the same time, eventually arriving at 18 Little Grebe, all on Conder Pool except three in the creeks. Also noted on the pool, Common Sandpiper, 4 Goldeneye, 12 Wigeon, 3 Goosander, a Great-crested Grebe, and a Little EgretThe only reward for my effort of a walk along the coastal path to Glasson Dock was 5 Blackbird in the same tree and a Kestrel over the marsh.

On the Lune Estuary, at least 4,000 Lapwing and 1,000 Golden Plover was a sight not to be called dull and uneventful, but the only other notes made were of 5 Red-breasted Merganser, and 3 Goosander. Having seen thirteen last Friday I could only find 2 Goldeneye here today.


Greenfinch Noushka Dufort 

Despite two hours at Cockersands I only made notes of the recently site faithful 22 Greenfinch in the cover crop field again, and 7 Pied Wagtail staying ahead of me as I walked along the headland.


C'sands Sundown. Pete Woodruff.

But at least I was able to see another splendid west coast sunset as I got back to the motor around 4.15pm.      

Blackcap Antonio Puigg


Close encounters of a bird kind!

In recent years a ringer from England has been leading a ringing trip to Portugal. In October this year he was back in Portugal and found himself extracting a male Blackcap from a mist net, he noted the bird carried a BTO ring which was no big surprise to him. Reading out the code on the ring, a fellow ringer suddenly went silent, then making a phone call home to England to his wife asking her to check his note book.

Amazing is a bit of an understatement here, when it was discovered this male Blackcap was one of only two ringed by him at a reservoir in Staffordshire, England in September this year just a few weeks before the ringing group had arrived in Portugal....WOW! 

Thanks to Noushka and Antonio for the excellent images, much appreciated as always.

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Friday PM!

Friday didn't look too good up till mid-day, heavy rain and barely came daylight in the morning, but actually bucked up to make a splendid afternoon where I spent most of my time in the Conder/Glasson area.

I found 20 Little Grebe today, but as they have done in previous years, they are moving around a little now with 15 seen on Conder Pool, 3 in the River Conder, and 2 on the Lune Estuary.


Red-breasted Merganser. Simon Hawtin. 

Also of note at Conder Green, the wintering Common Sandpiper, 2 Goldeneye, 2 Wigeon, a Red-breasted Merganser and Little Egret were all on Conder Pool, with the long staying Ruff and a drake Goosander in the creeks. Three Snipe came up off the marsh which I have been out on before today though not easy terrain to negotiate. I'll wager a few Snipe on there with Jack Snipe a strong possibility no doubt....if you'd like to risk breaking an ankle.


Coal Tit. Geoff Gradwell.

A walk along the coastal path to Glasson Dock produced a Coal Tit and 4 Robin. On the Lune Estuary I saw at least 50 Snipe again as Wednesday, with an increase in the count of 13 Goldeneye, c.120 Black-tailed Godwit, 8 Red-breasted Merganser, a Goosander, and a Peregrine Falcon on Colloway Marsh.

By now it was a little late in the day to do justice for a visit to Cockersands, but the magnet took a hold of me and off I went. I drove by the Wednesday count of c.22 Greenfinch in the cover crop field with a female Kestrel looking on from atop of a telegraph pole on Slack Lane. Waders on Plover Scar were flushed off and had to relocate on account of yet another 'numpty with mutts' on here. The waders went down on Long Tongue where I noted estimates of 400 Oystercatcher, 120 Turnstone, 15 Dunlin, and 7 Grey Plover, c.250 knot flew in but barely touched down on here before taking off again into the beyond.


Cockersands Lighthouse. Pete Woodruff.

Conditions were perfect at Cockersands Friday afternoon, no wind, and a flat calm sea, but even in the clear conditions the light was fading fast by just after 4.00pm.

Thanks to SH and GG for the excellent and much appreciated 'clik the pik' images. Also thanks to GJ for this weeks brilliant Black Grouse header.

Thursday, 13 November 2014

A Little Post Meridiem.

It was after mid-day before I escaped yesterday, I was raring to go earlier in the morning but abandoned the idea when the rains came down by the bucketful before I got out the front door.

Conder Green was a little quiet, but 4 Goldeneye were on the pool as was a Goosander and a Great-crested Grebe, I made a count of 125 Teal 75 of which were on the pool, with a count of 13 Little Grebe made today. A Ruff was the only bird of note in the creeks.


Snipe. Patrick at 1000-Pattes  

On the Lune Estuary at Glasson Dock, an impressive count of at least 50 Snipe on the mud below the marsh edge as the tide raced in. I also found my first 7 Goldeneye this winter on the River Lune here, and noted a Red-breasted Merganser and Great-crested Grebe, most of the waders had departed to their high tide roost. Note in this image, the capture of the Snipe's brilliant fanned tail. Thank You Patrick....Excellent.

A single Whooper Swan was with Mute Swans on Jeremy Lane. At Cockersands, a Rock Pipit was alongside a Meadow Pipit for a comparison opportunity below Crook Cottage, and 22 Greenfinch were in the cover crop field. Plover Scar held similar numbers of Oystercatcher and Turnstone as Monday, c.350 Lapwing were in an Abbey Farm field with a 'few' Golden Plover scattered amongst them. Two Stoat seen, and a Red Admiral in anything but ideal conditions.

Notes.


 Looking To The Fylde. Pete Woodruff.

At Cockersands I had to do my best to guess the arrival of this rain belt and failed miserably in the timing of my retreat ending up a wet Mackerel once again by the time I got back to the motor....

The Bow. Pete Woodruff.

....and got more of a soaking taking a pic of the rainbow, with Crook Farm distant centre, and Crook Cottage the small white speck on the right....and a good time was had by all!!



The unfortunate Mute Swan bearing this ring - which has been appropriately reported - was found on the marsh below the old railway bridge at Conder Green. The bird appeared to have been predated, there were many feathers scattered around the corpse which had been eaten into. 

Worth bearing in mind these birds are ready targets for the dogs of the 'doggie brigade'. I had cause to draw attention to someone recently whose hound was attacking a Mute Swan down and actually in the Conder channel, he was oblivious to this until I called out to tell him to call his dog off the bird....he wasn't exactly a bundle of fun this fella and showed a distinct air of indifference. 

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

....And A Little Snow At C'sands.

Conder Green was almost void of waders yesterdaythe tide was well up and any that had been there had done a bunk before my arrival.


Song Thrush Richard Pegler

I made the customary multi-count eventually settling for 16 Little Grebe on Conder Pool, a Great-crested Grebe was on here again, with 2 Goldeneye, a Goosander, and a Little Egret also on the pool. The circuit was a dull affair, Reed Bunting was seen, but I'm always pleased to see a Song Thrush as I did today. Note the brilliant arrowheads on the excellent portrait of the Song Thrush above....Thanks Richard, brilliant picture of a lovely bird.


Snow Bunting. Marc heath.

A conversation with a non-birder at Cockersands started by my being asked if....'I'd seen anything interesting'....to which I answered with the condensed version....'not yet but I hope to soon, it's what keeps me buzzing, never knowing what's next, I just keep looking'....a nice man who soon went on his way.


Rock Pipit. Martin Lofgren. 

It was almost high tide by the time I reached Plover Scar to find around 220 Oystercatcher and 65 Turnstone. But turning my attention to the inland edge of the scar I saw some movement to find a Rock Pipit soon followed by more movement in the corner of my eye which this time turned out to be a Snow Bunting the very bird I was looking for and the perfect example of....'never knowing what's next'....c.120 Pink-footed Geese went over south.

In the space of five minutes stood by the gate at Bank Houses horse paddock I counted 12 species, seven of which were all in the same bush, including the Little Owl for first time since 22 September, and 8 Tree Sparrow. The rest of the cast....

Goldfinch 12
Dunnock
Wren
Blue it
Great it
Blackbird 4
Robin 3
Pied Wagtail
Magpie
Black-headed Gull

A call on my mobile meant I had to leave the Lune Estuary at Glasson Dock before I got the chance to set up the telescope - the light was fading fast anyway - but I did see 2 Spotted Redshank and 6 Little Egret.

Thanks to Marc the Reculver Birder and Martin at Wild Bird Gallery the images always appreciated. 

Saturday, 8 November 2014

A Bit Of Buzz In Bowland....

....with Saxicola to make my day, Turdus, and Fringillidae

Making the best of a brilliant sunny and calm day I was off into Bowland on Wednesday, parked the motor up on the west side of Hawthornthwaite Fell, and off up the track for the first time since 17 June when I found just one pair of Stonechat. With no young seen on this date in mid June I made no other visits here and as I see it no breeding Stonechat on the west side of this fell in 2014.

Stonechat  Martin Jump 

But I was on the track up Hawthornthwaite only five minutes when I spotted a distant male Stonechat soon followed by a female, but a trundle to the top of the fell brought my excitement level down and I found no more, though to be honest I didn't expect to, after all it's the first week of November, but at least I found one pair likely to be wintering here which is what I had hoped for.

Whilst I was at the top of the fell a sight to epitomise the silent wilderness and the birds of Bowland was in the form of 7 Buzzard soaring together which turned into an even greater spectacle when a Peregrine Falcon flew through the seven, a Kestrel was over a few minutes later, and by the time I reached the bottom again I had seen 17 Red Grouse.


Cam Brow. Copy Permitted.

I had seen what was obviously a large number of 'thrushes' coming down into a field on the north side of Fellside Farm as I descended Hawthornthwaite Fell. But I had earlier predicted what I might possibly find in the berry laden area of Cam Brow where I eventually estimated at least 300 Fieldfare


Brambling Jan Larsson  

A couple of hours raking around in the Tower Lodge area resulted in 4 Brambling found, they were with three groups totalling up to 50 Chaffinch. Also noted just seven other species, 7 Coal Tit, a Blue Tit, Great TitNuthatch, Robin, Dunnock, and Wren.


Red Grouse Brian Rafferty  

The decision to round off the day by giving the bottom track at Birk Bank a couple of hours was a wise decision rewarded by another pair of Stonechat found on the north side over Ottergear Bridge, with 11 Red Grouse noted.


Bowland Autumn. Pete Woodruff.

Some beautiful autumn colours on show in Bowland on Wednesday too.

Thanks for the 'Picture Gallery' to Martin/Jan/Brian, they are much appreciated and all 'clik the pik' quality. 

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

After The Break.

After a break of three days it was good to get out birding yesterday on a nice day with some nice birds to go with it, though I had no cause to use my mobile to instigate a rave.... 

Red-eyed Vireo. John Benson.

....like the one about a small - Vireo olivaceus American songbird HERE 

Little Grebe Warren Baker  

Closer to home....Conder Pool claimed another first with 22 Little Grebe counted, also another increase with 4 Goldeneye on the pool now, 3 Goosander were hauled out on the terrace, and a Little Egret was stabbing at the shallow edge again. A Spotted Redshank and Ruff rested on the marsh at high tide.

A few thousand waders were on the Lune Estuary as viewed from the bowling green at Glasson Dock and included estimates of up to 1,000 Golden Plover, 650 Bar-tailed Godwit, 220 Dunlin, and a few Knot, 2 Spotted Redshank and 2 Greenshank were at the Conder Estuary, 2 Goosander and 7 Little Egret were also noted. As I got back to the motor 18 Long-tailed Tit came into a tree close by.

Cockersands was a delight, with no more than a light breeze as wall to wall sun broke through early afternoon, the birds were a delight too. Waders included 75 Turnstone counted on Plover Scar, 10 Ringed Plover were off Crook Farm, 2 Snipe on the marsh, Red-breasted Merganser and 2 Great-crested Grebe were on the estuary, 2 Spotted Redshank and a Greenshank were by the Cocker channel. 

Small birds included a Wheatear when I keep thinking I've seen my last, a Rock Pipit, 5 Greenfinch, a lone Tree Sparrow was in company with 8 House Sparrow, 6 Robin, 4 Blackbird, and a Wren was on the abbey ruins. 


A kestrel was within a metre on the same wire as 2 Reed Bunting, a Meadow Pipit and a Blue Tit all of which appeared oblivious of the raptor. A Buzzard was inland on a fence post and later mobbed by corvids in flight.

Monday, 3 November 2014

The Roller And The Bullfinch.

The European Roller is a rare vagrant, though over the years has amassed a total in excess of 300 records in Britain.... 

European Roller. Noushka Dufort

....but this one is in France.

I was amazed and surprised when I first saw the image of this Roller, amazed by the brilliant quality of the photography, and surprised at the Common Shrew in the birds bill. I had no idea this species of bird would take a shrew to feed to young as this one was doing according to the account by Noushka, thinking this birds diet was that of invertebrates.

So I did some reading up on the Roller to discover in one of the best reference books I possess - The Birds of the Western Palearctic - that the Roller feeds mainly on insects of medium to large sized beetles and crickets etc, making no mention of supplementing with the likes of an animal as large as the one in the photographs above.   

But more reading expanded on the Rollers feeding habits to claim....'The European Roller feeds on invertebrates, such as beetles, crickets, locusts, caterpillars, flies and spiders, they are also known to prey on small numbers of larger animals such as frogs, lizards, snakes and small birds'....and according to this evidence obviously the shrew.

And the Bullfinch.


Bullfinch David Cookson 


I was a little more than surprised to find 5 Bullfinch in Lancaster Cemetery on Wyresdale Road last Thursday. A species not found very much away from it's resident breeding grounds mainly in the Silverdale and Arnside, the Lune Valley, and the Heysham area. 

During last years breeding season 17 pairs were found on Warton Crag, and at least 3 pairs were in the Heysham area, but I found no records from the Lune Valley in 2013. But it's always a bonus to find the Bullfinch anywhere in our recording area away from traditional sites, and they were certainly an unexpected bonus for my visit to the cemetery last week. The most interesting Bullfinch I ever found was of four seen at Birk Bank on 1 November 2004, I saw four here again on 22 November when my records read that they were all male. I don't personally recall ever seeing Bullfinch in our area of Bowland before or since these records, but it is interesting to note that 2004 was the year of a massive invasion of continental Bullfinch into Britain around mid-October. 

Thanks to Noushka for the dramatic images of the Roller and the Common Shrew, and to David for the stunning male Bullfinch. 

Saturday, 1 November 2014

....And The Fieldfare Came Too.

Perfect timing this morning when I went into an upstairs room at home in Lancaster to see up to 200 Fieldfare flying south. But my first c.70 Fieldfare were seen over Conder Green yesterday.

My best from four attempts was a count of 18 Little Grebe on Conder Pool. But later I saw Tim Hutchinson - an excellent birder from Clapham who I've not seen for many a year but used to see regularly on Newby Moor and thereabouts when I went to this Stonechat hotspot in the 2000-10's - told me he had counted twenty Little Grebe on the pool. The Goldeneye was seen again on Conder Pool, and in the creeks, a Ruff, 2 Goosander, a Little Egret, and 4 Linnet took to bathing there.


Lapwing. Noushka Dufort.

The Goldeneye was seen on the canal basin at Glasson Dock again, and on the Lune Estuary, wader estimates consisted of at least 4,000 Lapwing, 420 Golden Plover, 230 Bar-tailed Godwit, 60 Black-tailed Godwit, and an adult Mediterranean Gull....Still no Goldeneye on the estuary.

 Little Owl. Pete Woodruff.
  
Cockersands was a little void, but was well worth the visit if only to find a Little Owl at Abbey Farm. Until I search my records for dates, the first one here for several years, never bred here and never a resident at this farm. Up to 30 Greenfinch was a decent count for the species in the cover crop field on Slack Lane, c.350 Golden Plover were on the Cocker Estuary, a Snipe came up from the marsh as the tide pushed in, a Kestrel seen, and c.500 Oystercatcher appeared to tolerate two people with nine uncontrolled mutts on Plover Scar with not another bird in sight....but I'll resist the temptation this time to go into another of my rants on that one.

I failed again to take notes on the Little Egret but probably saw c.10 on the day on the Lune Estuary at Glasson Dock and Cockersands.

And finally....

  
My closing shot at Cockersands taken at 4.10pm when I was running out of decent light for birding. Worthy of 'clik the pik' which is more than I dare say for the Little Owl shot which features the last one seen at the farm several years ago.

Thanks to Noushka  for the brilliant sixteen Lapwing in flight.