Monday, 19 January 2015

Cold Does The Trick

Cold weather usually brings about bird movements so I was keen to get down to Aldcliffe to see what effect this current cold snap has had on the local birdlife. The path along Freemans Wood was still frozen in the late afternoon and the Pool itself was completely ice covered save for a tiny patch next to the island that held a crowd of 2 Little Grebe, 4 Gadwall and c50 Teal. The woods were pretty quiet so I headed up to Marsh Point where a few Cormorant were feeding in the river along with 3 Goldeneye (1 male) and a female Goosander.

From here I could hear the familiar sound of geese, but not the Pink-feet that I've been hearing this last week, this was the Greylag flock which has been absent from the marsh for a couple of weeks. About 50 Greylag Geese were feeding in front of the Golden Ball along with 15 Canada Geese and about 20 Pink-feet. A few scans through the Greylags and bingo, a single juvenile White-fronted Goose, the cold weather had brought them back after all. There also seemed to have been an increase in Mute Swans on the marsh with about 40 dotted around, no yellow bills amongst them yet however.

The river itself held the usual wader species and a couple of Little Egrets, whilst he marsh was mostly frozen which probably explains why there were no Snipe in the area around Snipe Bog, just a small flock of Meadow Pipits. A small wader that flew past me when I was there was unfortunately too brief to get an ID on, but it sounded different.

For the first time this week there were no Pink-footed Geese on the Drumlins. 63 species for the patch year.


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