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Post Info TOPIC: Culcheth


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RE: Culcheth



Single Woodcock on edge of Hitchfield Wood this morning

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4 Corn Bunting on wires along Holcroft Lane this afternoon, including at least a couple of them in song.



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The probable Siberian Chiffchaff showing well this afternoon in the tall trees at north end of the linear copse.



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The probable Siberian Chiffchaff still present in usual spot today.Having put in an half hour with the bird I'm more convinced than ever that there are 2 tristis types present. Also at least one collybita type Chiffchaff, plenty of Goldcrest and at least 4 Reed Buntings again feeding on midges in the trees.



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Funny you should say that

On one of my visits I thought there's a possibility of 2 Tristis - one of my views looked slightly plainer than the other at a different location

I dismissed it as changing light conditions or observer error

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Spent about an hour with Brian Hilton this afternoon watching the Siberian Chiffchaff, which was on show most of the time.On a couple of occasions we were both convinced that there were 2 very similar birds in the area.We also saw one or two Collybita types.When I first saw the bird back in early January I was certain there were 2 identical birds there,but this is the first time since then that I've seen a second possible Siberian Chiffchaff. The birds were feeding in trees along the metal fenceline that runs at right angles to the long linear copse.

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The probable Siberian Chiffchaff was showing well this afternoon in trees along the fenceline at right angles to linear copse (seems to prefer this area when windy as it's sheltered),also good numbers of Goldcrest, 8 Reed Buntings etc.Yesterday the black and white Reed Bunting was around the sewage works(see Astley moss thread,2nd Feb by Dave Steele)which caused an a bit of panic for a couple of minutes until I got a decent look at it and realised what it was.

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The probable Siberian Chiffchaff showed well this afternoon in the copse to the right of the sewage works office block,and managed to pose for a few pics.Also present was the collybita Chiffchaff,plus the usual Goldcrests Long Tailed Tits etc.
You can see from the photos the absence of olive in the crown and mantle,the grey/brown hue of the upperparts,and although it doesn't really show well in the pics there was a hint of yellow on the underwing,but no where else on the bird.

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No sign of any Chiffchaffs this afternoon.



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The only (unprocessed) image I managed of the prob tristis Chiffchaff this morning

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Updated birding videos on You Tube https://www.youtube.com/c/PeteHinesbirding


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The probable Siberian Chiffchaff still present today, feeding in trees along the border fence that runs at right angles to the linear corpse,also at least 2 Chiffchaff in the area,200 + Pied Wagtails on the adjacent fields and sewage tanks,a Grey Wagtail,plenty of Goldcrest etc



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5 Corn Bunting on wires along Holcroft Lane this afternoon.

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The probable Siberian Chiffchaff was feeding in the small copse of trees and brambles to the left of the locked entrance gate to the sewage works this afternoon with a collybita Chiffchaff which called. The Siberian Chiffchaff was very obviously greyer and paler than the darker warmer coloured collybita bird and didnt call. Another collybita was also seen along the track next to the perimeter fence.

Other birds in the area included:
At least 20 Goldcrest- scrutinised but couldnt pick out the Firecrest
2 Coal Tit
5 Reed Bunting
c20 Long-tailed Tit
4 Goldfinch
2 Chaffinch
60+ Pied Wagtail on and around the filtration beds

Gulls in the sewage works included:
2 Herring Gull
1 Lesser Black-backed Gull
40+ Black-headed Gull

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I'm pretty convinced about the Siberian Chiffchaff now

Saw the "tristis" bird in good light by the path, then flew off, then replaced by a "collybita" same twig

The tristis was much greyer, slate grey mantle. Movement slower than collybita, more deliberate, less jerky & energetic. Can't really comment on subtle structural differences. Didn't call

The collybita was a considerably warmer brown. It sang !

I first saw the tristis along the perpendicular hedge, later by the solar panels, then further N beyond the hump towards the Raven

Possibly, just possibly heard the Firecrest distantly

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An interesting & surprising sunny hour at the sewage works.

Firecrest moving around the hedge line with at least 5+ Goldcrest. Seen twice in the 2nd gap area as you head towards the orange gate

Probable Siberian Chffchaff & 3 regular Chiffchaff also noted.

Reed Bunting - 4

Pied Wagtail - 48 on the adjacent field with many more heard/seen among the tanks



-- Edited by Ian McKerchar on Thursday 6th of February 2020 06:00:29 PM

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No sign of probable Siberian Chiffchaff today in a quick check,however there were 2 singing Chiffchaffs(fortunately neither resembling the prob Sibe).Also a singing Goldcrest and still 4 Reed Bunting feeding in the tree tops.



-- Edited by Ian McKerchar on Wednesday 5th of February 2020 03:22:18 PM

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The probable Siberian Chiffchaff still present today in the lineal. corpse adjacent to the sewage works, also 1 very bright Chiffchaff and interestingly 4 Reed Buntings in the tree tops actively feeding on midges.



-- Edited by Ian McKerchar on Sunday 2nd of February 2020 04:34:11 PM

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North end of Withington Avenue feeding on set aside but birds constantly moving back & forth so a rough count only.

Tree Sparrow - 50+
Reed Bunting - 60+
Chaffinch - 30+
House Sparrow - 20+
Yellowhammer - 2

Kestrel - 2
Fieldfare 250
Redwing - 100
Mistle Thrush - 2

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11.00 - 11.45

The Probable Siberian "tristis" Chiffchaff was showing reasonably well around 10/15 metres before the Orange gate, Constantly feeding along the water treatment works fence line. As below reports the bird was not heard to call.
Also in the area
1 Collibita Chiffchaff
Many Pied Wagtails on the filter beds
4/5 Goldcrest
Long tailed Tit flock containing a bird absent its long tail.

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The probable Siberian Chiffchaff again at the sewage works together with one bog standard Chiffchaff, the 2 birds were feeding high up in the trees at the north end of the lineal copse that borders the works.Watched them again for 30 mins and again no calls heard.This is the 4th time I've seen them since early Jan and have yet to hear them call !!



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Probable Siberian "tristis" Chiffchaff again at Glazebury works, with 1+ collybita about 3pm

Walk SSE down track as Ian describes, just past solar panel field, around orange gate, also along perpendicular hedge forming border of solar panel field

Both (probable) tristis & collybita tend to feed lower down, so check both sides of track. The apparent "tristis" is significantly duller. No calls heard. Both drift in & out of a decent flock of Long-Tailed Tits, Goldcrests etc

Also, 400 Golden Plover briefly, 400 Redwing distantly, 3+ Reed Buntings, 100 Pied Wagtails (some resembling White Wagtails - no, not the juveniles, but some adults with longer tails), 1 Grey Wagtail, 10 Goldcrests, 20 Long-Tailed Tits, 100 Pink-footed Geese over, 1 Treecreeper

Also, an unpleasant number of midges



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 An early afternoon visit to Glazebury Wastewater Treatments Works again today saw three Chiffchaffs (possibly four at one point, with maybe another heard further back towards the houses); two perfectly normal Common (collybita) Chiffchaff and one showing characteristics of Siberian (tristis) Chiffchaff.

The possible Siberian Chiffchaff displays a full suite of pro-Siberian plumage features and was finally seen well at fairly close range but more importantly in good light and at different heights which meant at times it was lower down and against a background productive for carefully assessing the subtle plumage hues. Unfortunately, it was and always has been silent and given the complexities and pitfalls in their identification, a call from the bird is still needed despite how 'good' the bird appears to the eye.

Interestingly though, on playback of Siberian Chiffchaff song the bird reacted strongly and immediately (both collybitas ignored it!) with it flying in and flitting around trees above my head while furiously wing shivering!! I should strongly point out though that song playback was purely in order to assess behavioural and vocal responses from the bird which may have lead to a better understanding and/or confirmation of its true identification and that it should not be played in order to locate the bird or indeed merely to obtain images. The bird needs to feed as much as it can in this climate so distracting it from doing that may well ultimately be detrimental to it (I will certainly not be doing so again, not least as there now is no point and the we already have the result!) but it shows well enough, picking off midges and there are points you can nip into the trees to obtain a better view of that side of the wood.

I attach a 'map' of the area with pin 1 being the location of the bird and pin 2 being the parking place. Park and walk down towards Hawthorne Avenue, continuing along the path which runs parallel with the treatment works where the road bends sharply right towards the houses. Walk just past the solar farm and the thin wood on your left bordering the filter beds is where the bird is, usually roughly about a third to half way along.

 

 



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3 Corn Bunting (together) on roadside wires along Holcroft Lane just before midday.



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2 adult Whooper Swans currently in the field with the flood (now mud!) off Holcroft Lane, just a couple of hundred metres from the junction with Warrington Road currently. Seemingly settled.



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A look at the set aside west of sewage works behind the Raven pub was very disappointing,not a single finch of any description on the whole area,only bird was a Kestrel hunting over the set aside.
The sewage works area was more interesting with several Pied Wagtails and a single Grey Wagtail on the filter beds and in the trees adjoining the beds a Treecreeper, a nice flock of Goldcrest and a couple of very pale Chiffchaff which were definitely candidates for "siberian" birds,unfortunately they didn't call in 15 mins of watching them .!!

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On a pleasant afternoon took a walk up alongside treatment works off Moss Lane.

Chiffchaff - 3, occasionally you get the odd one around in winter but surprised to get 3 & more or less together! Suspect presence of insects in, on & around treatment works is the draw & life saver especially during cold weather spells.

Goldcrest - 4, as above

Coal Tit - 2

Long tailed Tits - 12

Pied Wagtail - 50+, difficult to get an accurate count of birds in the tanks & moving around

Grey Wagtail - 1

Kestrel - 2

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A stroll down Moss Lane & alongside the treatment works plant on a pleasant but cool afternoon yesterday.

Long tailed Tit - 15 & a single Goldcrest

Linnets - 50 on set aside

Fieldfare - 200+ along local hedgerows & dropping into fields

Redwing - 100+ the same

Mistle Thrush - 2 ditto

Sparrowhawk - female cut across area scattering all the above

Kestrel - 1 sat on hedgerow watching everything but not moving

Pied Wagtial - 30+ on treatment tanks

Grey Wagtail - 2 same

Magpie - 15

R Glaze/Moss lane
Teal - 14

Mallard - 10

Bullfinch - 1 pair crossing river

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A walk round the set aside was quite productive with still a flock of a couple hundred mixed finches/buntings feeding on the set aside inc at least 30Reed Buntings,a few Yellowhammers ,Linnet, Goldfinch and Chaffinch making up the flock.A Sparrowhawk went through the flock a couple of times. Two Golden Plover over ,a single Snipe accidentally flushed from under the hedge, a single Grey Partridge and at least 1000 Woodpigeons feeding on the winter crop in the fields. On the sewage works lots of Pied Wagtails together with a few Grey Wagtails and Meadow Pipits feeding on the circular sewage tanks.

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The set aside to the west of the sewage works behind The Raven pub had 180 Linnet this morning in one flock,also several hundred Chaffinch,25+ Reed Bunting a few Yellowhammer and a single Brambling.On the sewage work tanks there were good numbers of Pied Wagtails and 2 Grey Wagtails with a few Fieldfare over.

-- Edited by pete berry on Wednesday 9th of January 2019 11:30:53 AM

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That's ducking the issue!!!

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They arrest them young these days *sigh*

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Amazing to see a female Mallard & 10 chicks (1-2 days old) out in front of Risley prison this morning.

Not the best of timing with the imminent weather forecast!

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Pink footed Geese - 70 east & then c150 back west

Swallows - 10 circling overhead & feeding

Chiffchaff - singing this morning

Common Buzzard - 5 circling overhead inc a white (from below) looking bird

Raven - 2 circling high overhead

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Pink footed Geese - 60 flew low to west this morning

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Mixed tit/warbler flock - an amazing sight of over 100 hundred individuals moving quickly through trees at bottom of garden. First realised it was a sizeable flock 3 days ago, so when I heard them coming through today actually stopped & counted them!! A rough count was:

Long Tailed tits - 20+

Blue Tits 35+

Great Tit - 25+

Warblers - at least 10 but no chance of ID

Plus others among the jumble of birds!




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Blackcap calling from edge of New Hall farm this morning, first of year for me!

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A chilly walk up Withington Avenue to set aside & then to surrounding area & woodland.

Brambling - 30 in set aside & hedgerows with the following also flitting around the same area
Linnet - 6+
Yellowhammer - 4 (1m/3f)
Corn Bunting - 3
Reed Bunting - 3
Tree Sparrow - 2
Goldfinch - 8

Mistle Thrush - pair on adjacent fields
Nuthatch - 2 pair in woods
Long tailed Tit - pair building nest, very late & indicative of recent cold weather?


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Thanks Rob



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nige c


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Hi Nige

its in my garden.

Otherwise you can usually see brambling, reed bunting, yellowhammer & tree sparrow at the far end of Withington Avenue (off north side of warrington road) on the set aside

Regards
Rob

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Hi Rob

never been to this area where are / is the bird table 

thanks in advance Nige 



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nige c


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The bird table has been of particular interest this winter so far. Just before Christmas and every day since the following have been appearing daily at the feeders

Brambling - up to 9 most days. Started with a single bird in December & then gradually increased since. Previous record was of a pair appearing briefly in the garden in 2011!
Siskin - 5 max to date. Normally only ever get the odd single bird in early spring as it passes through.
Bullfinch - up to 7 most days. Again only ever use to get the odd pair on rare occasions but now are regulars every day & sometimes on & off most of the day.
Goldfinch - 25 max to date but they do appear every year in good numbers.

In contrast

Greenfinch - only 2 records this winter, a single & then 2 briefly last week.
Chaffinch - between 2 - 6 some days



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Rob Smith wrote:

Pink footed Geese - ca300. The flock was in a hollow on the east side of Holcroft lane and not easily seen from the road which is probably why they have been there mostly, since I last reported them on 31st December 2017. I must remember to take my scope
next time in case of anything else amongst them!





There was a Canada goose with them last Friday, I picked it up distantly as I was walking over the landfill, the flock lifted from the same area by Holcroft Lane. It's probably just a local bird but a lone Canada in a flock of Pinkfeet might be worth checking out - just haven't had chance myself.

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Bent lane and footpaths going out east & back again.

Kestrel - 2, looking to pair up with a lot of calling in flight from the female

Buzzard - 2

Pied Wagtail - 60, all around the horse paddock areas

Lapwing - 200 on muddy fields

Black headed Gulls - 150 with lapwing

Fieldfare - 50+ moving around the area

House Sparrow - 30+ in hedgerow along lane

Pink footed Geese - ca300. The flock was in a hollow on the east side of Holcroft lane and not easily seen from the road which is probably why they have been there mostly, since I last reported them on 31st December 2017. I must remember to take my scope
next time in case of anything else amongst them!

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Chiffchaff in the garden this morning, it spent awhile gleaning insects of my patio rose bushes, a nice surprise. Shortly after a Wren was doing same.

Not sure what it says about my rose bushes!

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Pied Wagtail - 15 in sewage works
Kestrel - 1
Grey partridge - 2
Chaffinch - 20

Pink footed Geese - 300+ Hunkered down & resting in a depression in the field on the south side of the footpath leading to Crow Wood. The flock was not visible from Holcroft lane & there could have been more but not easy to see/count in the hollow!

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The set-aside by the sewage works still had at least 400 Chaffinch and a few Bramblings today and a flock of 22 Stock Doves in the nearby field.

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Hi John

They continued to fly around the area for some 15' after being put up from local fields to the east by a light aircraft which kept circling the area during that time!



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09:23 400+ Pink-footed Geese flew due E low over Culcheth. Noisy !

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There's a large area of set-aside is just to the west of Glazebury Sewage Works,the strip of set-aside is at least 500m long and holds at least 1000 finches,mainly Chaffinch,but good numbers of Brambling in with them and smaller numbers of Reed Buntings etc.There were also approx. 500 Pink Footed Geese flying about just to the south,undoubtedly the birds that are frequenting the nearby mosses.To access this area park in road behind the Raven and walk south keeping the sewage works on your lhs.

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A walk onto farmland north of Withington Avenue producing a restless mixed flock of finches, buntings & sparrows which included:

Tree Sparrow - 40+
House Sparrow - 20
Chaffinch - 40+
Brambling - 1
Yellowhammer - 4 (1m/3f)
Reed Bunting - 15

Pink footed Geese - 60 heading low to NE

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