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Post Info TOPIC: Cheshire River Mersey Sites


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RE: Cheshire River Mersey Sites


Low tide (0.5m) late morning yesterday and good for waders on the mudflats west of Norton Marsh, totals:-
Lapwing 1254
Golden Plover 7
Redshank 36
Black-tailed godwit 11
Curlew 9
Also a steady passage of Skylark overhead with a few meadow pipits and 2 swallows.
Red Admiral, Speckled Wood, Common Darter and Migrant Hawker still on the wing.

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Fiddlers Ferry
Kestrel hunting over the River. Shot low over water putting up all the gulls.

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Gatewarth
3 Buzzards drifted over from canal side in a line

Mute Swans and 7 Young still on canal at Fiddlers Ferry

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Wigg Island

7 Avocet
5 Little Egret
20 Black tailed Godwit

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32 Black tailed godwits, 220 lapwing and 1 redshank late morning on the mudflats west of Norton Marsh

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Gatewarth

f Sparrowhawk over
2 Jays
Stock Doves
Single juv Willow Warbler in hedge by main path

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WIGG ISLAND

Few hours this morning over high tide at wigg Island viewing from the tower hide highlights

Along the river
Lapwing 45
Curlew 20
Shelduck 53
Redshank 2
Great white Egret 3 on far bank of river along with 4 Little Egret and 5 heron as the tide came up in the same scope view

On pools
Greenshank 2
Black-tailed Godwits 5
Teal 26
Gadwall 1
Tufted Duck 8






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Fiddlers Ferry

Kingfisher low over water flying over River
Plenty of hirundines over including House Martins
Single Golden Plover with Lapwings

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Hale lighthouse

1 Tree Pipit
3 Golden Plover

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Gatewarth

Buzzard high over
Gull numbers up on River
Toadlet-this year,s young
Fox on far side of River up and down edge of water. Drinking from River at one point

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Fiddlers Ferry
Mute Swans have bred successfully this year. 7 full grown young with two adults on canal.

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10.00-12.00

80 Lapwings on the Mersey mud opposite the power station pumping station.

Walked along Richmond Bank as far as Gateworth.

Masses of gulls on the mudbanks, but I couldn't pick out anything uncommon amongst them, just 2 Common Gulls there though.

Also, 1 Cormorant, 8 Grey Herons, 8 more Lapwings on Richmond Bank and 4 Swallows passing through.

Lots of Gatekeeper butterflies around the bramble patches, also 3 Meadow Browns and a single Peacock.

4 Common Blue butterflies around the areas of trefoil.

The path along the banking at Richmond Bank is very overgrown, largely with Blackthorn, but where brambles cover the path they are head high.

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John Williams


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Penketh Old Hall Farm
Single Grey Partridge very vocal in the middle of a field. Poss young bird.
Gatewarth
Jay over the old tip

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4 Common Sandpiper on the River Mersey at Pickerings Pasture

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Late post for Sunday 13th July.

Osprey was present and in full view (although distant) of the hide overlooking Norton Marsh, on a large rock on the far banking of the Mersey, it didn't move from there for approx 1 and half hrs and was still present until we left the hide at roughly 5pm. Other birds from the hide included an increasing number of Great Black-backed, Herring, and Black-headed Gulls gathering on the mud bank not far from the Osprey.

Many thanks to the couple coming away from the hide who told us the Osprey had just landed, and good to meet the 2 Mersey birders in the hide who reported the Peregrines were on show earlier towards the gas towers, but me and Mum missed them. They also saw Tree Sparrows in the vicinity but again we missed them.

Other birds of note:
5 Buzzard
4 Reed Bunting
2 Linnet
1 Yellowhammer (more heard)
1 Whitethroat
1 Jay
Plenty of Swallow and Swift.

Some of the sightings seen on way back from the hide to the car.


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Went down for the Osprey this afternoon via Moore NR - cracking day of Midsummer birding, with the Osprey turning up fifteen mins after my arrival - flying right down the Mersey - before emerging with a massive fish. It took this to the far bank - on a bit of scaffold - and proceeded to pick at it lazily, as seen through my scope. A good tick and a lifer for me.

There was a Shelduck on the mudbank, plus a Kestrel hunting Upper Moss Side. Pretty sure I had a singing Corn Bunting, but definitely circa 3 Yellowhammers, with one seen.



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Good scope views of the osprey as it sat on the far bank opposite the Norton marsh hide, after a while it flew further away to the left, still present when I left at 3.20pm.

Nice to meet & chat with mike Mulholland smile

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saburke


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Osprey still present this morning and caught up with the Corn Bunting (third time lucky), cheers Sid, great patch record!

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Norton Marsh
Osprey present 6.00ish last evening
F Marsh Harrier also

Yellowhammers and 1 Corn Bunting singing

Loads of butterflies out inc a Wall...not seen one for years

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Osprey showing well this morning for a couple of hours. Finally took to the air as we were leaving but didn't move too far and was still in view. Good views of yellowhammer and linnet also.

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Cheers Sid, yeh that flower meadow has been busy recently, Yellowhammer seem to like the area - and I've have a few Tree Sparrow sightings this year although their numbers have dropped in recent years. Your Corn Bunting may have come from the farmland just to the North - where there is no access, it's a good record (I'm going to try and catch up with it tomorrow).

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Finally caught up with the Osprey, sat in a tree opposite the UMS hide. Thanks to the eagle-eyed couple who pointed it out to me as it wasn't easy to see, being sat side on with very little white showing! Nice to see one relatively close and in Cheshire too! Other birds of note, at least 3 Yellowhammer, all male. 5 Mistle Thrush (at least 3 were juveniles), 3 Whitethroat, Buzzard, Kestrel, 2 Jay and what very much sounded like a Grasshopper Warbler reeling. Isn't this a bit too late? I guess it could have been an actual Grasshopper, as I didn't see the bird itself.

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Mike Mulholland wrote:

Sid whereabouts was the corn bunting? It's been several years since I had one on the patch..


Mike the Corn Bunting was on the overhead wire, on the road near the wooden bridge onto the flower meadow as I was arriving at 06.50.

PS Mike I have gone back through my records for the area for the last 10 years and although I am not as frequent a visitor as yourself I have not recorded seeing Corn Bunting there either. Could it be that the relatively new flower meadow has attracted the species especially with all of those tall grasses in there. Just a thought.





-- Edited by sid ashton on Monday 7th of July 2014 04:21:05 PM

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Sid whereabouts was the corn bunting? It's been several years since I had one on the patch..

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Watched the Osprey land on a log on the river bank at Norton Marsh at 08.20 this morning. It sat preening and wing stretching in the sunshine and was still there when I left about an hour later. At one point a fox walked close to the bird but didn't seem to bother it.

Other birds of note around the flower meadow:- Common Whitethroat, Bullfinch, Kestrel and Corn Bunting. Also lots of Martins (House and Sand) over the lagoons at the power station.

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Osprey still present today seen from the hide that overlooks Norton Marsh.

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4x Little Ringed Plover with a common sandpiper, Widnes warth today.

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Hot and sunny
Not much birdsong, Whitethroats still singing and 2 Blackcaps
2 Bullfinch seen in bushes at top of Bank
1 Grey Partridge

Most Marsh Orchids almost over-more Northern Marsh looking ones over completely Bee Orchids seemed to be over..Single Common Spotted Orchid out. Pyramidal Orchids c50 fully in flower.

2 Large Skipper

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Gatewarth yesterday 8.30am
2 Lesser Whitethroat still singing
1 Grasshopper warbler reeling from fiekd with Bee Orchids in. First I've heard here since April.

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Gatewarth
1 Lesser Whitethroat still singing-intermittently-from bushes near entrance to reserve/wooden bridge.

1 Grey Partridge.


7 Bee Orchid spikes- field sloping down to the Ferry pub. Well out


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Gatewarth
Damp and cold
1 Grey Partridge

Marsh Orchids well out... hybrid Southern x Northern I think

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Gatewarth
AM

2 Lesser Whitethroat Both singing continuously.
One, showing v well, nr entrance /wooden bridge, The other v mobile along bushes along river bank.This bird got as far as path down to Ferry as it moved around, quite close to the other LW, both could clearly be heard singing at once.

Lots of other warblers singing-Willow , Sedge, Reed, Chiffchaff,Whitethroat

Marsh Orchids well out more or less all over


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Gatewarth
1 Lesser Whitethroat singing continuously in hedges/trees near entrance to reserve, by wooden bridge. Mobile, singing all the time as it moved round. So close at one point, in hedge on main path, I couldn't focus the bins down !

3 Grey Partridge the first I've seen here this year.

Butterflies on wing inc Peacocks. Bit earlier at Oglett shore/Hale, loads of Green Veined Whites seen.

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Gatewarth
1 Lesser Whitethroat singing top of Bank.Flitting into hedge along main path and showing well.

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Grey Plover is a very good record Brian! I can only recall a couple of records over the last twenty years or so.
I noticed over the weekend there were more Dunlin around and heard Whimbrel, also had a stunning male Whinchat.

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Gatewarth

A stunning Grey Plover with 6 Dunlin in tow on the river mudbanks this evening after the gulls had gone to roost. Amazingly a fox ran close behind them as I was watching without disturbing them and I got great scope views.

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Gatewarth
2 Lesser Whitethroat singing on site today.
One from bramble choked hawthorns on top of the River Bank opposite Richmond Bank one from trees and hedges near wooden bridge at entrance to reserve.
Both skulking I did manage to see one pretty well.

Loads of Whitethroats.

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Gatewarth 6.30-7.30pm
I couldn't locate Cetti's this afternoon, didn't hear Lesser W.either tho lots of Common Whitethroat singing.
1 Grasshopper Warbler reeling from close to Wind Pump.

Two youths trying to kill a pair of Gadwall on the canal with a large log. Depressing.



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Gatewarth

A Lesser Whitethroat was singing/rattling from the top of a hawthorn bush, on south side of the hedge, and level with Richmond Bank this afternoon. A site tick for me.

Several Common Whitethroats, Willow Warblers and Chiffchaffs were also in full flow.

No sight or sound of the Cetti's, but I did not venture down the bank (and I had not seen John's previous post prior to my visit).

Up to three Common Sandpipers have been seen this past week.

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Gatewarth
7.30-8.30 pm
Dull, drizzly

Cetti's Warbler singing again. Only briefly and the bird was in deep cover (massive bramble patch on top of bank where River bends...almost as far as the Wind Pump) and not moving.

Just before this, from hedge bordering main path, a female Redstart flew out as I approached. Third site tick of the week ! Lots of Blackcaps feeding along this hedge too.

A least 4 prob 5 Grashopper Warblers reeling in Old Tip area. Numerous Warblers singing. Single Whitethroat. 2/3 Swallows.

M Kestrel hunting. Two Buzzards in air together, one calling repeatedly.

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Gatewarth
8-30 - 9-30pm
No sign of the Cetti's from yesterday but I was a bit later on site..

Grasshopper Warblers seem to have relocated a bit, all 5 heard reeling tonight spread out on the Old Tip area, none on the field where they've been singing from up to now.

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Gatewarth

Another site tick for me today when a Cetti's Warbler heard singing loudly and repeatedly from bushes on top of riverbank.
Very mobile, moving constantly along brambles and trees as it sang.
Skulking but after about 20 minutes I did get a pretty decent sight of it .
Maybe the same bird that was present a couple of years ago at Sankey Bridges?

Couple of swallows present.

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Gatewarth
At least 3 ,probably 5 , Grasshopper Warblers reeling in small area of brambles and reeds in field sloping down to the Ferry pub.
One glimpsed.

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Gatewarth

2 Common Sandpipers seen along Sankey Brook as it meanders around Phase1 this afternoon. Also Whitethroat, Blackcap, Willow Warbler and Chiffchaff all singing east of Whittle Brook.

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Gatewarth
Warblers reaching maximum species
1 Whitethroat
1 Reed Warbler
3 Blackcaps
heard and/or seen today along with Chifchaffs and Willow Warblers

More unexpectedly :
a site tick in the shape of a Ring Necked Parakeet. Loudly calling in trees near Wind Pump annoying the local Magpies. Flew off in direction of canal. An exotic splash of colour on a grey drizzly afternoon.

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Gatewarth
7.30-8.30pm
Willow Warblers outnumbering Chiffchaffs
Single Grasshopper Warbler reeling continuously from brambles/reeds in sloping field down to the Ferry.

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A patch first for me yesterday - caught up with Cheshire's roving Great White Egret. Early afternoon Andy Dutton and myself had walked to the Halfway House watchpoint mainly on the look out for Wheatears and any other migrants. It was relatively quiet (we didn't have any hirundines), spent an hour or so checking the Mersey for waders and really little of note, just about to go when the Egret dropped in to feed in the shallows adjacent to the southwest corner of Norton Marsh. In the ten minutes or so it was there it was feeding constantly and it then flew to Wigg Island.

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Gatewarth

Single Willow Warbler singing from willows in field sloping down to Ferry Pub

Numerous Chiffchaff

F Sparrowhawk hunting low over old tip then soaring high over River

Buzzard perched up on a fence

-- Edited by John O'Neill on Sunday 6th of April 2014 08:41:42 PM

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thanks Chris
"a few years"...how observant am I !!

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Hi john.i have been putting food there in the winter months for a few years now and despite the yellowhammers being in close proximity they haven't made their way over to the feeding station yet although most of the time this year I have spent having my dinner in the ferry car park due to the big van that parks on the other side of the road.how inconsiderate...

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