Surprising who you bump into…


A quick look at Marshside was hardly encouraging – although good numbers of birds were still on Marshside One aka Rimmer’s Marsh, the roar of the traffic felt particularly annoying today, so after a gander at the Pochards on the Sandplant lagoon, and usuals out on Marshside Two, I drove over to Mere Sands.
The feeders there were busy – but I wasn’t expecting a Water Rail to wander out in front of me – the freaky sprinty thing was as startled as I was and volte faced back into cover in the time it took me to fire off a point and press shot.
Nice bird though.
A male Sprawk was terrorising the Tree Sparrows, finches, titmice and buntings, but they soon emerged from the branches once it had swept through.
I love the deafening silence that follows a passing Sprawk, just before all the potential din-dins decide it’s safe to call again.
Bullfinches were a pleasure to watch there, with at least four birds coming in for seed.


Goosanders and Goldeneye on the water, and the winter skellingtons of oak trees looking stark and superb as I wandered round.
Nuthatch, Treecreeper and Greater ‘Pecker were most woodlandy.
Popped into Martin Mere for a chat with Andy Bunting – all very Whooper-duper.
Churchtown Moss had Fieldfare, Redwings and Mistle Thrush amongst the feeding Starlings and about 20 Corn Buntings.