Monday, 31 March 2014

Great White

Carr Lane Pools (Hale Village) - 31/03/14, 15:30

I was driving through Hale today and couldn't resist a quick look at Carr Lane Pools and the adjacent Hale Marsh which was partially flooded today; I'm glad I did as I managed to catch up with the long staying Great White Egret which has spent the winter ranging along the coastline here between Hale and Spike Island; the bird was fishing on a flooded section of Hale Marsh between the Duck Decoy and Hale Road....for once I owe the roadworks a big thank you as it was the temporary traffic signals that gave me the chance to look over the marsh and spot the Egret! A full roundup of this cracking area follows:

Great White Egret (Hale Marsh)
Red Breasted Goose (Hale Marsh with Shelduck)
3 Little Egret (Hale Marsh)
18 Golden Plover
2 Redshank
2 Oystercatcher
Common Buzzard
11 Gadwall
2 Shoveller
45 Teal

Hanford, Stoke On Trent - 31/03/14

Red Kite
3 Common Buzzard
6 Chiffchaff

Friday, 28 March 2014

Ring Necked closed?

A number of people have commented on the blog over the last few months regarding the growing Ring Necked Parakeet population in South Liverpool.......sorry for not replying to the posts, as I had let the blog slide slightly (you may have noticed!); but a recent article on the feral population in the UK has been published which reveals the negative impact of this species on other native passerines.......I have to admit I quite liked the idea of them flying around our local parks but after reading this maybe I will have to revise this notion!
To download the article click on the link below.
or for a short article discussing the findings click below

Out on the Mosses

Haskayne/Downholland Moss

Sand Martin (Rosemary Wood Fishery)
2 Great Crested Grebe (Rosemary Wood Fishery)
3 Common Buzzard
2 Kestrel
1 Merlin (male)
1 Sparrowhawk (male)
2 Corn Bunting
Reed Bunting
20 + Linnet
10+ Skylark
6 Oystercatcher
25+ Lapwing
Whooper Swan (flew low towards Altcar Moss)
20+ Red Legged Partridge
Brown Hare

Altcar Moss

Brown Hare
Corn Bunting
Common Buzzard

Cottam, Preston

4 Common Frog
4 Common Toad
1 Smooth Newt
2 Chiffchaff
7 Common Snipe
Corn Bunting

Common Buzzard - M62 near Roby

250+ Cowslips in flower - Roby Road

Sand Lizards

Here are a few pictures of male (Merseyside) Sand Lizards seen last Sunday on The Sefton Coast during  a NMARG habitat management day, they are not very colourful yet at this time of year, but give them another month and they will be stunning. Conservation tasks have been in full swing during the winter and early spring; removing invasive tree and scrub from ideal reptile habitat (not to mention habitat for rare amphibians, invertebrates, plants and birds too). This work has been much needed for a long time now and will now help ensure the survival of this rare genetically distinct (sub)species of Sand Lizzard. Later in the spring a series of conservation tasks will focus on the implementation of sand patches on a number of sites to provide ideal egg laying habitat for these fascinating reptiles. for more information on North Merseyside Amphibian and Reptile Group click on the link below.

Sand Lizard - Sefton Coast, 23/03/14

Sand Lizard - Sefton Coast, 23/03/14

Sand Lizard - Sefton Coast, 23/03/14

Sand Lizard - Sefton Coast, 23/03/14


Thursday, 27 March 2014

Migration Time Once Again

19/03/14 - Trafalgar Dock (North Liverpool docks)

male Northern Wheatear
2 Peregrine
35 Ringed Plover
15 Lapwing
15 Oystercatcher
40 Linnet
3 Skylark
23 Shelduck

Chiffchaff (in song) - Riverside Drive NR (Otterspool)

21/03/14 - Haskayne

2 Mediterranean Gull
Little Egret
6 Shelduck
4 Oystercatcher
Common Buzzard
Corn Bunting
10+ Skylark

22/03/14 - Sefton Park (main lake and field of hope areas)

2 Mute Swan (nesting)
Chiffchaff (singing)
Blackcap (singing)
Great Spotted Woodpecker (drumming)
2 Nuthatch
5 Little Grebe
25+Redwing (singing)
4+ Ring Necked Parakeets (heard from the dell area)

Greenbank Park

Chiffchaff (singing)
Treecreeper (singing)
Grey Heron
2 Mute Swan
Bullfinch (calling male)

23/03/14 - Sefton Coast area

A habitat conservation day with North Merseyside Amphibian and Reptile Group (NMARG) ended in a quick search for Sand Lizards at a few sites; resulting in 3 male and 1 juvenile being found along with 2 Common Lizards.

24/03/14 - Waterloo Dock area (North Liverpool Docks)

8 Ringed Plover
6 Lapwing
11 Oystercatcher
2 Mute Swan
Greylag Goose
60 Linnet
Rock Pipit
2 Northern Wheatear

25/03/14 - Greenbank Park

2 Chiffchaff
Great Spotted Woodpecker
2 Mute Swan

26/03/14 - Festival Gardens (Otterspool)

3 Chiff Chaff
3 pairs of Coot
3 pairs of Moorhen
1 pair of Mute Swan
12 Mallard
Colts Foot
Marsh Marigold

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Pickerings Pasture

Little Egret - Pickerings Pasture NR

I called in at Pickerings Pasture NR on Monday afternoon to try and catch up with the now long staying Red Breasted Goose and Great White Egret; no sign of the Egret but a Little Egret showed very well on the pool in front of the bird skreen. The Red Breasted Goose fed with Shelducks distantly out on Hale Marsh, a male Merlin and a Little Stint rounded off a great hours birding!
2 Little Egrets, Buzzard, and 9 Shoveller showed well on Carr Lane Fields.

Red Breasted Goose - Hale Marsh

Little Egret - Pickerings Pasture NR


Sefton Park

16 Ring Necked Parakeet
4 Nuthatch
2 Great Spotted Woodpecker
100+ Redwing
Pipistrelle sp. - day flying in Ibbotsons Lane
active Fox den
Peacock Butterfly

Greenbank park

2 Cormorant
2 Mute Swan
Grey Heron
2 Nuthatch
Great Spotted Woodpecker
35+ Redwing
12 Mistle Thrush
6 Ring Necked Parakeet


Hurst Reservoir, Dark Peak SSSI

Merlin (female)
2 Buzzards
50+ Red Grouse
Whooper Swan
4 Curlew
5 Crossbill
10 Siskin
28 Lapwing
Red Grouse - Hurst Reservoir

Red Grouse - Hurst Reservoir

Whooper Swan - Hurst Reservoir

December 2013 Highlights

Long-Tailed Duck - Marshside

Golden Plover - Marshside

juv. Ross's Goose - Marshside

Glossy Ibis - Private Site, West-Lancs

Glossy Ibis - Private Site, West-Lancs

eclipse male Shovelers - Greenbank Park

Parrot Crossbills - Budby Common, Notts

Parrot Crossbills - Budby Common, Notts

Great Northern Diver - Southport Marine Lake

American Buff Bellied Pipit - Burton Marsh

Mallard X Wood Duck (or maybe Mandarin) hybrid - Churchdown, Botanic Gardens