Not your average Saturday morning!
Despite the dodgy looking cloud cover it stayed dry, and a bit of a thaw happening, though one couldn't tell from looking at the pools which were all still solid ice and bird-less. Aldcliffe was unusually quiet, people wise, for a Saturday morning, hardly surprising given the recent spate of wintry weather we have had! I started with a wander through the woods and saw Goldcrest, remarkable considering the cold, how do they survive? Also a good number of Blackbirds present. On the track were Bullfinch, Greenfinch, Chaffinch and Goldfinch. A number of Robin, Wren, Dunnock and Blue/Great Tits in the hedgerow. A good pile of farmyard manure has been dumped in the maize stubble field which will hopefully attract a few birds, only a Robin on there today.
I then bumped into Guy and we headed towards the noise of geese. There was up to three very active Water Rail in the ditch, and a few Redwing and Fieldfare in the trees. There was roughly 900 Pink-footed Geese in the fields opposite the walled meadow, with a number of Lapwing and gulls mixed in.
Said cheerio to Guy and made my way along the tidal wall. It wasn't long before another 1000 or so Pink-footed Geese arrived on the marsh joining forces with the 300 or so Greylag and 275 Canada's. I had already counted 10 Barnacles and another 7 landed with the fresh input of geese, I attempted a trawl through but was getting a bit nippy, anyway at least 17 Barnacles back on the marsh. Also present were a few Curlews, Little Egret, Wigeon, Teal and a flock of 16 Snipe flew north. A further 35 Fieldfare were flying between the hedges near Bank Pool.