Trip reports

Visit to Marshside, Southport

Adult black-tailed godwit in summer plummage, at the RSPB Snettisham nature reserve, Norfolk

Sunday, 18 October 2009

Sickness and holidays reduced our numbers, but 9 hardy members met on a dull, raw morning with an east wind blowing. Little Egrets and Grey Heron were on the marsh and several small flocks of Redwing flew over.
In the main hide two of us were lucky enough to see a Water Rail before it dived into cover. More obliging were the numerous Wigeon, Pink-foot, Canada and Greylag Geese. A large flock of Golden Plover was constantly on the move with Lapwing in the distance. We also saw Pintail, Shoveler, Little Grebe, Coot, Moorhen, Mallard, Teal, Pied Wagtail, Magpie and Starling, Greater Black-back, Lesser Black-back and Black-headed Gulls.
From Nel's hide overlooking the inner marsh we had good views of Black-tailed Godwit, Snipe and Dunlin, plus two birds which caused some discussion but which were probably Ruff. (We needed an expert!) The only raptor we saw was a Kestrel over the outer marsh. There were also Pheasant, Crow, Jackdaw, Cormorant and Robin.
After lunch we moved on to the new RSPB reserve at Hesketh Out Marsh. This reserve is in its early phase and birds were few, but it should attract good numbers later. From the excellent viewing platform we added Mute swan, Ringed Plover and Curlew to our list.
Jill Blackburn