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Expectation management.

Posted by on October 7, 2013 8:04 PM | 

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Not really got out birdin' properly for way too long, but wrangled a very bitty break over the tide at Weld Road today.
At least the breeze was pleasant and the high sea and horizon teased limitless potential....meanwhile back in reality a few Mipits nipped thro' and I grilled the ones that dropped onto the deck - nothing wrong with spending time with Mipits, if only to marvel at the variation.
Grey Plover, Barwits, Oycs, Curlews, Little Egrets etc on the rising tide, with Reed Bunts, Linnets, Starlings and Skylarks.
Once the unending parade of dog walkers and their mutts had frightened most everything away, I gave in and paused to watch a game of "crow v crustacean" before heading home.
There was only ever going to be one winner between a Jackdaw and a wee crab way out of its comfort zone, but I applauded the little fella's last pincer waving defiance before the inevitable.

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Mmmmm crunchy....
Back at the 'towers autumnal slash and burn was interrupted for passing Jays, Goldcrests, Grey Wags, Buzzards, Red Admirals and Migrant Hawkers.
On the subject of dragonflies, thanks to Phil Smith for sending me some great shots of the Black Darter still at Slack 47 at Ainsdale - a classy insect, cheers Phil!

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Eyes to the skies everyone, eyes to the skies...

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Stopped for a chat with a former neighbour whilst walking through Coronation Park in Ormskirk this morning, and was interrupted by what sounded like a Willow Warbler sort-of-singing from the small woodland in the corner.
Further investigation revealed a mixed flock of WWs and Chiffchaffs working their way through the wood.
There were I'd guess about 15-20, but it was very hard to tell.
It kind of "book-ended" the season for me because this was where I heard the first ones in the freezing early spring.
'Twas a nice few minutes!!

Visitors to the RSPB’s Parkgate nature reserve on the Dee Estuary are being given the chance to see England’s most threatened bird of prey, the hen harrier.
Over the next six months the reserve is hosting “Skydancers on the Dee”, a series of events offering nature lovers the opportunity to experience these amazing birds at their winter roost site.
Hen harriers breed in the uplands and are famous for the male’s spectacular courtship display known as skydancing. The birds spend the winter on lower ground, often on marshes, and the Dee Estuary has long been one of the best places to see these birds.
Sadly though, skydancing has become all too rare a sight in England; numbers of breeding pairs have been steadily falling, but this year there was not a single successful hen harrier nest in the whole of England, despite a government commissioned report suggesting there is sufficient habitat for more than 300 pairs.
Independent research has shown that ongoing illegal killing and disturbance associated with the grouse moor industry is responsible. If this practice is allowed to continue, hen harrier numbers will continue to decline and they could eventually become extinct in England.
This year’s “Skydancers on the Dee” season begins on the weekend of Saturday 12 and Sunday 13 October at 12pm until dusk, at the “Donkey Stand” on The Parade in Parkgate. All events are free and visitors can come along any time until dusk.
For the full list of event dates visit www.rspb.org.uk/deeestuary. Find out more about Skydancer at www.rspb.org.uk/skydancer

Cracking juv Pom Skua south past Ainsdale - bird lingered, then headed west back out into the bay at 1315 today...

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