A few degrees of frost and the high tide cycle falling away, meant bird numbers were inevitably down at Marshside today, but in gin-clear blue sky conditions, the old place was still impressive – and rammed with birds.
Merlin, several Marsh Harriers, Kestrels, Sprawk and two Common Buzzards took advantage.
The latter appeared to be “tailgating” opportunist GBBs way out on the outer marsh, in the same way that Merlins track Hen Harriers, but what do I know?
The Little Egrets looked a tad non-plussed by the freeze-up, but a Great White was still striding about at interstellar range as Bazzo and I ‘scoped the outer marsh, and for all the never-ending annoyance of traffic-drone, the spectacle of at least 2,000 Golden Plover and at least 300 Dunlin swirling about amongst the Blackwits, geeses and ducks justified the carbon monoxide flavoured Sandplant-Crossens and back stroll.
Crossens Outer had 11 dozing Whoopers with more out on the Ribble as the tide ebbed and mudflats emerged, and Stonechats were still hopping from decaying fencepost to fencepost as the frost melted away and the cars got slower, more intrusive and frequent.