Trip reports

Visit to WWT Martin Mere

Visit to WWT Martin Mere
WWT Martin Mere (Photo: Peter Berrill)

Sunday, 23 October 2011

A mild overcast day in what has turned out to be the warmest October for years saw us arrive at the visitor centre in good time.

The unseasonal weather seemed to have fooled a mallard with five small ducklings on Swan Lake and the captive wildfowl were looking splendid in their new plumage, especially the red-crested pochard.

We headed for the Ron Barker Hide passing the many tree sparrows and other woodland birds. Great views afforded from this hide gave us pink-footed goose and whooper swan grazing the grassland and the channel opposite held wigeon and teal.

From Raines Observatory ruff fed within feet of the window and a green sandpiper was spotted further up the shoreline. En route to the United Utitlities Hide a mixed tit flock were joined by siskin. From the hide a very pale buzzard roosted on a fence post and a marsh harrier quartered the fields beyond.

The group gathered in the Swanlink Hide in good time to see the many whooper swan arriving for feeding time. As the warden passed by shovelling out the corn, all the wildfowl swept forward losing all their inhibitions and squabbling. The larger family groups taking precedence over all. Shelduck, mallard and pintail scurried between the warring factions.

The group registered sixty wild bird species, a brown rat and a very lively stoat were also seen.

Peter and Lesley Berrill