Black-headed Gull.

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On Friday last, I found a marked Black-headed Gull on the Lune Estuary at Glasson. The instant I read the ring it registered with me that I had not only seen this bird before, but that I had seen it at the same location on the Lune Estuary 3 years ago in September 2014.Black-headed Gull. Pete Woodruff. The bird was marked with a white darvic ring and a three black alpha-numeric code on the right leg and a metal ring on the left, and has been re-sighted and read five times, three in Denmark, and two on the Lune Estuary in Lancashire. I'm grateful to Kjeld Tommy Pedersen for dealing with this record, and for forwarding the history of the bird to me.Black-headed Gull 6CY.Ringed as an adult male in Svanemøllebugten, København, Denmark on 21 March 2013, and re-sighted....27 March 2013. DKHS&nbs...
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The GP’s Have It For Me.

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Greenshank. Conder Pool Friday 17 November. Pete Woodruff.A snoozing Greenshank on Conder Pool was good enough to get me off to a nice start on Friday morning, 17 Wigeon were also of note here, and the 180 Teal at Conder Green were split between the pool and creeks, where I found 7 Little Grebe and the Common Sandpiper which was down by the now finished and newly painted bridge....must have cost a fortune.The Lune Estuary was quiet wader wise, apart from the presence of the usual several hundred Lapwing, 320 Dunlin and 7 Snipe, with c.350 Wigeon seen.The Cockersand at least 500 Whooper Swan were initially in the field by Bank Houses as seen from the headland, but by the time I got there they had been disturbed and were eventually scattered over five fields. On Plover Scar, c.450 Oystercatcher, and little more than a two hande...

Uphill Struggle.

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Hawthornthwaite Fell.It was an uphill struggle to find the birds in more ways than one on Wednesday, but literally so on Hawthornthwaite. Apart from the fact the Stonechat isn't as easy to find as it was during it's upturn in status which peaked during the early 2000's, I'd got 3/4 of the climb to the peak before I found a distant pair of Stonechat, the only two seen on my visit, and at a higher elevation than Iv'e ever seen them here before. But ne'r mind....mission accomplished. Wren. Martin Jump. Four Wren on Hawthornthwaite seems to indicate a good colony, I had six seen here on 18 October, also 10 Red Grouse. Marshaw - Tower Lodge - Trough Bridge.A Dipper was seen on the Marshaw Wyre with a juicy aquatic invertebrate in it's bill, but it was ...
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….And The Cockersand Whooper.

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Monday's birding didn't fail me again even if it was a little lower down the scale in the quality department.The number has increased to around 550 Whooper Swan in the field adjacent to Bank Houses at Cockersand SD432534. It was a treat to hear them all bugling away, standing erect and necks stretched to the limit at the sight of someone watching them from the lane. In the same field, 48 Redshank 2 Snipe, and several hundred Starling, there was also quite an impressive count of at least 1,500 Wigeon in the Cocker channel. From Slack Lane, 120 Golden Plover in fields, and my first albeit a solitary Fieldfare gave me good views in the Willows.On the Lune Estuary at Glasson, 450 Common Gull were of note, 24 Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Goosander, and singles of Bar-tailed Godwit and the no better than scarce here T...

Williamson Birdlife.

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Nice day on Saturday, and with no birding since Wednesday I was off for a walk through Williamson Park and on to Lancaster Cemetery . Not excactly a birding Mecca our park in Lancaster, but between here and the cemetery I noted, 16 Blackbird, at least the same number of Magpie and 3 Robin. In the cemetery, it was good to find my first 50 Redwing with small flocks very mobile from tree top to tree top, also an excellent count of 7 Nuthatch including three close together calling loudly in an excited call, a Goldcrest and 6 Long-tailed Tit were in trees by the cemetery entrance.The Bullfinch.Bullfinch. Geoff Gradwell.Whilst in the cemetery on Saturday I recalled seeing my first ever 5 Bullfinch here 3 years ago on 30 October 2014, never before and not since. A...
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Whoopers Abound.

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Whooper Swan. Brian Rafferty.I'm reliably told of a total count of 1,350 Whooper Swan at locations in the Fylde, and I saw some Whooper Swan movement into and around Cockersand on Wednesday, with two flights of 25/20 S over Lighthouse Cottage, and later flights of 55/20 from the SW over the Cocker Estuary where birds were also seen on the sea. Whooper Swan. Brian Rafferty. When I got to estimate them in the field NE of Bank Houses where there had been c.265 on Monday, today there was up to 300 Whooper Swan.Two Rock Pipit were always moving ahead of me on the tide wrack as I walked from Crook Cottage to Plover Scar around the high tide where there was a decent count of 112 Turnstone, 450 Oystercatcher, 52 Dunlin, and a lone Grey Plover, with 5 Eider off here. Of note on th...
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Fieldcraft!

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When I arrived at Cockersand yesterday it was soon apparent that the fields needed a little closer attention again with waders all over the place. In fields around Abbey Farm and Lighthouse Cottage, 550 Golden Plover, 105 Black-tailed Godwit, 75 Curlew, and at least 50 Turnstone, with Redshank and Lapwing, 8 Skylark went into the air, and there was no effort required in finding at least 265 Whooper Swan in a field to the north east of Bank Houses. Almost certainly the same bird seen here 25 October was a male Merlin obligingly on a fence post seen from Slack Lane where I saw a flock of 30 'finches' around the cover crop, 22 Linnet, 6 Greenfinch and 2 Chaffinch.Off Lighthouse Cottage at high tide, 2 Rock Pipit were on the shingle and a Snipe came up off the marsh. Whe...
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A Southerly Direction.

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A trip south along the A588 on Thursday, had me down Crimbles to find 2 Ruff on the flood, with 82 Lapwing, and a few Redshank and Curlew. A Barnacle Goose was with up to 450 Pink-footed Geese on Cockerham Moss, and along Gulf Lane at least 450 Whooper Swan including just 27 juvenile in a flooded corn field opposite Cockerham Moss Edge Farm, c.30 Tree Sparrow were in the area.Pink-footed Geese Brian Rafferty     I drove on to the viewpoint at Pilling Lane Ends to see several thousand Pink-footed Geese  distant and way out on Pilling Sands, no attempt to count, but probably at least 30,000. Along Fluke Hall Lane, 95 Whooper Swan, and at Fluke Hall 8 Long-tailed Tit in the hedgerow. Forty five minutes at Cockers Dyke sifting through at least predominantly 900 Black-headed G...

Out And About….Again.

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There was 2 Common Sandpiper at Conder Green again yesterday, one in the creeks and one down the channel towards the Conder Estuary. Four of the 5 Little Grebe seen were also in the creeks with just one on Conder Pool where there was a roosting Greenshank, 6 Curlew, and 3 Goosander.Pink-footed Geese. Pete Woodruff.From the coastal path, 73 Pink-footed Geese were over >south, 10 Long-tailed Tit and a similar number of Goldfinch.An impressive sight in excess of 2,000 Golden Plover were on the Lune Estuary, with 82 Black-tailed Godwit, 4 Great-crested Grebe and a Goosander noted. On the canal basin, 38 Tufted Duck seen, beware of the female with the white blaze, never as extensive as the Scaup, and this one has an obvious small tuft if you get close enough to it.Lesser Black-backed Gull. Pete Woodruff.At Cockersand,...

This Isn’t Birding!

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On the last two visits I made to Cockersand I've made life easier and travelled light on foot, leaving my telescope behind in the boot with just a pair of binoculars round my neck. Every time I do this I vow never to again, fearing I might find - and sometimes do - some distant small thing unable to get to grips with what it really is I'm looking at. Yesterday was a repeat of the trip to Cockersand last Wednesday, when I decided then, that the fields here really are in serious need of a good thrashing, with waders all over the place. Two fields in particular are now excellent stubble holding a fair amount of water, one of these yesterday produced a Ruff a Grey Plover, and a good number of the c.300 Curlew I found at Cockersand today, also 450 Golden Plover and 54 Black-tailed ...