Monday, 21 March 2011

Warton Bank, 20th March

The spring high tide at Warton on the banks of the river Ribble is always a birding treat.
The tide today reached a height of 10.6 metres. Enough to cover the marsh and temporarily
displace normally, hard to see birds.
Myself and Sean Johnston arrived about fifty minutes before the tide was in, stopping briefly
at Preston Dock for the Iceland Gull which was present but rather distant.

The weather was very grey and overcast with occasional drizzle, which probably accounted
for the less than expected crowd, around a dozen only.
The weather didn't deter the birds and Short-Eared Owls numbered at least 3, singles of
Peregrine, Marsh Harrier, Hen Harrier, Merlin and Sparrowhawk, with 2 Kestrel and 2
Buzzard seen, bringing the raptor count to seven species.
The incoming tide pushed 2 Jack Snipe from off the marsh and out on the Ribble was a pair
of Eider duck.

The star birds at this site are the Water Pipits and we saw a max' of three together. They
showed reasonably well but i have seen them better in the past. Meadow Pipits fed
amongst them, along with several Reed Buntings.

Short-Eared Owl

Water Pipit

Whooper Swans

Warton marsh at high tide. A female Merlin is the
lump on the right-hand side of the log.

No comments:

Post a Comment