News archive

September 2008

Sunday, 21 September 2008

Field teaching at the Lodge

'Fun Day' for all the family !

Glorious sunshine and bumper crowds ensured that the Group had a successful 'Family Day', on the 21st September. The event held at Wirral Country Park, Thurstaston, was one of a number of initiatives held in 2008 to celebrate our 25th anniversary. Fun items for children such as Bird Bingo, a Duck Race & Face Painting were supported by a penalty shoot out by West Kirby Lions. We also had the pleasure of officers from Merseyside Fire Service showing us their latest fire fighting and rescue equipment. The Police also attended, when officers from their dog unit came along to show us the excellent work they do on Merseyside.

We showcased for the first time new projection equipment, which has been recently purchased following a grant from the National Lottery 'Awards for All' scheme, in the centre's lecture theatre.

Jeremy Bradshaw, leader said "The event was for all the family but primarily aimed at children who we see as the guardians of the future with regards to protection of our countryside, coast and wild places that will enable future generations to enjoy the simple pleasures of bird watching".

Sunday, 14 September 2008

Wheatear in spring

Lost in the mists of time.......

As the group set off from West Kirby visibility was down to about 500 yards in the sea mist that engulfed the Wirral. With the tide coming in quickly, there was little time to watch the waders that we feeding in the creeks around Little Eye. A lovely wheatear on Little Eye provided a welcome distraction from the hard slog out to the island. Large groups of redshank, curlew, bar-tailed godwit and oystercatcher fed in the pools around Middle Eye, where once again wheatears roamed. Onto Hilbre Island itself we had fleeting views of a female merlin as she dashed in amongst the small group of meadow pipits feeding on the rough grass of the island. Although visibility was poor, we did manage excellent views of a shag, numerous gannets and common scoter. On the rocks around the island turnstone huddled away from the wind to await the waters dropping down to a level where they could once again start feeding. The odd Sandwich tern came past but we saw no skuas - a disappointment for all ! Huge numbers of cormorant fished in the waters off Hilbre with one or two great crested grebe. With a strong wind from the south (and surprisingly cold!) migrants were always going to be scarce and that proved to be correct with only swallows and house martin being seen. Although the sun never came 'out to play' all day, we had an enjoyable couple of hours over the tide swapping bird watching stories!