More excellent birding experiences were on offer again this week, when I paid another visit to Bowland. This time I took stock taking a little more serious with the usual disappointments, but with a few memorable positives to more than compensate.
Marshaw - Tower Lodge - Trough Bridge.
The day got off to a pretty good start, when I found a female Redstart at Marshaw.
Two of 4 Pied Flycatcher seen, a pair were seen at one of the two remaining nest boxes in the compound at Tower Lodge. I understand a pair are using the other nest box, but I made no contact with these. Better still, a male was singing around a nest hole east of here, and further east a female was around the plantation at Trough Bridge. Despite me lingering at both these two sites, I saw no mate with these two birds.
Six Common Sandpiper were on the Marshaw Wyre, where I found just 5 Grey Wagtail.
The sight and sound of 7 Willow Warbler was down on the last visit, but this one was in good voice. At least 12 House Martin were busy around the lodge, there was no sign of these birds here on my last visit on 14 May. The Cuckoo was calling from the woodland strip above here. Also noted, 4 Mistle Thrush, and 2 Song Thrush.
On my way back to Lancaster, I called in at Abbeystead to hear more birdsong, predominantly Mistle Thrush in this footage of the Marsh Marigold and Bluebells at Stoops Bridge. Also Chiffchaff, Song Thrush, and Willow Warbler.
The Redstart at Marshaw was my second on territory in a week in Bowland, and the first one to be found in the area around Tower Lodge since I found five here in June 2013. I don't recall seeing any reports of the Redstart from anyone/anywhere over this period, so looks like 8 years since the Redstart made an appearance here.
Five seen today, follows two previous visits here when I found none on this two mile stretch of the Marshaw Wyre. This compares miserably with 12 Grey Wagtail all adult seen here on 29 May 2013. This may well be 8 years ago almost to the day, but unless these birds are evading me, this is a notable decline for the species at this location.
Two birds was a disappointing count this visit, considering the area is/was a stronghold in our recording area, with 12 Spotted Flycatcher seen 27 June 2018.
Notably, I've not yet seen a Dipper on the Marshaw Wyre at this location, despite recently spending up to a total of 12 hours here.
Taking Stock....To be continued.