29/04/2012 Martin Mere WWT

Blackcap: On a stormy day at Martin Mere the rain did its best to keep the birds under cover and me tucked up in a nice dry hide, but rain cant keep me from birding. Along the path passed the Swan Link Hide there where a few Blackcap singing and showing well.
Wood Warbler: While walking around in the rain trying to find the Blackcaps I came across a Wood Warbler singing and calling before it decided it had enough of the weather and flew down among the Hawthorn bushes.
Shoveler: I started the morning at the back of the reserve on the Reed Bed Walk, I had some good views of a male Marsh Harrier, two Red Legged Partridge, Pochard and a few Shoveler Ducks which where very flighty to begin with but after a while they returned and where showing well.
No sign of the Crested Pochard or Med Gulls.

28/04/2012 Formby Point

Red Squirrel: After the visit to Mere Sands Wood I headed down to Southport and Formby Point. A lovely place especially when the sun started to shine and the wind calmed down. I didn’t spend long, the highlights where not doubt the Red Squirrels.





Saw four in total, one running across the road in front of the car, the rest where very flighty and seen shy. Not much bird life seen, although on the sand dunes there where two very active Wheatear.

28/04/2012 Mere Sands Wood

Blue Tit: A very rare trip to Mere Sand Wood, not too far from Martin Mere was a bit of a slow day, plenty of  Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff and Blackcap and the regular garden species. Many where showing well at the feeders near the Lancaster Hide.

No sign of the Kingfisher. Perhaps my luck will be in next time.

27/04/2012 Warrington Hospital

video


Pied Wagtail: Dawn took this video when she was at work for me, not an unusual bird, not exhibiting any unusual behaviour, but still a very nice bird for my Blog thanks Dawn.

It was taken in the Warrington Hospital car park, hopefully this wont be my last video upload on here many more welcome to be donated.

25/04/2012 Moore Nature Reseve

Reed Bunting: A trip to Moore to see if I could finally bag the Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, the elements where conspiring against me as the heavens opened and the sun took his hat off!
Greenfinch: Not much out of the ordinary around the feeding station, Green and Gold Finches, Blue, Coal and Great Tits, Reed Buntings, Nuthatch, Treecreepers and a few Jays and the Greater Spotted Woodpeckers. The weather was getting worse the rain was pouring down and the light was poor even with high ISO.


But it was quite apart from the birds and their songs and calls, still it was nice, it was a million miles away from work in that dam office.

 

Greater Spotted Woodpecker: There where two male woodsy around the feeding station, I was hoping for a snap of the Lesser Spotted and after getting a stiff neck, walking around looking up at the trees around the boardwalk I still didn’t get a glimpse of the beauty.








The woody was showing really well guarding the feeder, he kept hoping from the tree to the feeder ever time a Blue Tit or Finch tried to seed.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Before getting dropped off at Moore I started my day with a brilliant trip to Martin Mere WWT and saw my first ever ***COMMON CRANE***. It was at some distance seen from the Ron Barker Hide but it was showing well for about 10 minutes or so before dipping down behind a bush.

It was tremendously brilliant and tremendously rare only about 6 breeding pairs in the UK over in Norfolk and with at least 60 passing though,. The Crane was a very nice surprise.

Another ‘LIFE TICK’ I hope it sticks around as I will be back over the weekend.

24/04/2012 Chester Meadow

Willow Warbler: This little gem was found among the Hawthorn bushes, Linnet, Chaffinch and Greenfinch around in good number too.

Blackcap: My first one of the year seen alive! As I did see one early in migration on the bank of the River Dee but sadly it was dead.  I heard a few within the bushes of the Wirral, this shot is poor I know but the first one I have snapped do I thought I would put It up for prosperity.





The Moorhen Chicks (below) in the pond at The Grosvenor Park  are now down from Seven to one! Sad times, Unless some where under cover.

20/04/2012 Chester Meadows

Moorhen: After a stroll around Grosvenor Park I came across a pair of Moorhen with seven chicks which were not shy at all. It was great to each as they begged for food and fed from their parents.



They are such strange looking chicks I think they look almost prehistoric like, with their balled heads and short stumpy wings
Reed Bunting: Form Grosvenor Park I headed down to Chester Meadows spotting Linnets and Reed Buntings within the Gauze bushes.

Common Gull: Before the rain started to drench me I snapped this Common Gull hanging around with five Black Headed Gulls on the River Dee. It’s only the second time I have seen this not-so-Common Gull in on the Dee.

18/04/2012 The Wirral Peninsula

Long Tail Tit: Not even the rain can stop me from packing my camera and bins and setting off down to the Wirral, what a wet horrible wet day. The weather kept most of the birds out of reach of my lens saw some Linnet around Red Rocks, Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff and Blackcap at Leasowe.



I was not the one looking all shabby during theses cold April showers, as this Long Tail Tit has was looking very soggy tucked within a bush.

17/04/2012 River Dee

Collared Dove: Thought I would take my camera down to the banks of the River Dee after work while the good weather stays with us.

The species to note where Nuthatch, Song Thrush, Reed Bunting, Meadow Pipit and not much else, it was just nice to get out after work.

15/04/2012 Tarlscough Lane, Burscough

Red Legged Partridge: I decided to walk up to Martin Mere down Tarlscough Lane then Fish Lane towards the reserve. This was a very good decision as in each farmers field there where numerous Red Legs and a single Swallow flying above the farm houses.

15/04/2012 Martin Mere WWT

Marsh Harrier: Great day out once again at Martin Mere with a very early start I made my way to the United Utilities Hide and after watching two male Sparrow hawks chasing each other off while I turned to see a female Marsh Harrier trying to land in a tree a few metres away from the hide the little bugga caught me of guard as I scrambled for my camera.
This shot was the best of a bad bunch, the bird never actually landed as it got mobbed by a pair of Lapwing.


I started off at the back of the reserve taking an early morning stroll down the new Reed Bed Walk way. I am glad I did, not only did I see my first Sand Martins, but I had a wonderful display from a pair of hunting Marsh Harrier from the viewing platforms.


Reed Bunting: On the Mere itself it was very quiet, the best of the birds coming from the Ron Barker Hide, where once again, I was truly treated to a pair of Marsh Harrier (possibly the same form the morning), on the far bank on the ground in some flattened reeds.




Good numbers of Ruff, Avocet, Curlew, Ring Plover and a few Swallow flying through still showing well from this hide. Definitely worth a visit for anyone planning a trip soon.

I snapped the Reed Bunting at the Janet Kear Hide.



13/04/2012 Frodsham Marsh

Willow Warbler: My first Willow Warbler of the summer bagged at one of my favourite birding sites, this migrant bird was singing high up in a Hawthorn bush along Brook Furlong (the lane with the bid sighting box) I thought it was chiffchaff at first until it started singing.
I love April it is my most productive month of the year in the number of species seen and here is another summer visitor bagged, bring on the ret of the Warblers.

12/04/2012 Chester Meadows


Grey Wagtail: Seen on the banks of the River Dee, Cormorant and very few Black Headed Gull also seen which is usual as I often see other gulls and in larger numbers.

After the visit to Burton I took a trip to the Meadows while the sun still had his hat on, on the way as I walked down the Dee path I came across a Cormorant on a red buoy, this was a good photo op.



I liked the contrast between the dark bird and background with the sharp red plastic buoy. I have posted a pic of a Cormorant in this pose (See Comerant Lables) 06/01/2011 Rivr Dee

Long Tail Tit: This was a lovely spring sight as a pair of Long Tail Tits where collecting webbing and other fluffy nest building materials. Otherwise it was a quiet day many dog walkers about not many gulls around either on the Dee or the Meadows.








Reed Bunting: Walking across the Earls Eye of the Meadow I saw this little flighty bird chirping away other noisy birds included Sky Larks and odd Mallards heard flying over head.

12/04/2012 Burton Wetlands RSPB

Nuthatch: A brief visit to Burton Wetlands RSPB Reserve was pretty disappointing as I went to see if I could see the Brambling which has been vacating the feeders in the last few days and alas no sign of the little finch.
But I did snap this very hungry Nuthatch as it as regularly visiting the feeder.

Avocet: Seen from Inner March side of Burton Wetlands reserve.







08/04/2012 Martin Mere WWT

Pochard (male): The rain cant stop me from taking my binoculars and camera outdoors and I am really glad I did, with cracking views of male Marsh Harrier, Pochard and my first Swallow of the year all seen around the new reeded walk at the back of the reserve.
Pochard (female): On the main reserve where about 70 Avocet, loads of Oystercatcher along with good numbers of Redshank, Ruff, Lapwing and several Ringed Plover.
A stunning male Sparrowhawk caused panic as it tried to catch dinner at the Janet Kear Hide and there was still 12 Whooper Swan on and around the mere still, several Pink footed Geese, at least 1 pair of Pintail also on the mere.



06/04/2012 Loggerheads

Dipper: This smashing little bird was the only good bird of the day as me and Dawn spent the day at Loggerheads it was seen on the River Alyn just along the footpath. The bird was showing really well and didn’t seem at all shy as it was feeding and preening right in front of us.






I am sure they are a common sight along the river at Loggerheads but I guess it can be a challenge to see them especially on a bank holiday weekend or a summer’s day. There were packs of dog walkers, many owners letting their dogs bounce around in the shallow water




I am surprised any Dipper would want to take up residence in this dog play pool, and alas the dipper was eventually sacred off after a Labrador came down for a dip. Greater Spotted Woodpecker was heard and there were lots of common tits, Chaffinches and Nuthatch also seen.




01/04/2012 Frodsham Marsh

Chiffchaff: A sunny afternoon in Frodsham Marsh reviled a flock of Golden Plover, Curlew, around seven Avocet and four Little Ring Plover all seen from the end of Tank no.6






Elsewhere there where lost of Chiffchaff in various location and a female Hen Harrier seen quartering over the reed beds off Tank no.6




Reports of a Whitethroat and Short Eared Owl seen yesterday on Tank no.6