Sunday, 11 October 2009

Local birding: Brockholes Wetland LWT - 11th Oct 2009.

Above: 2 Greater Scaup (fem & juv), Brockholes Wetland LWT, Lancs - 11th Oct 2009.
Good coverage throughout the day by several observers produced highlights of 3ad Whooper Swan until 11:00 when they flew SW, 2 Greater Scaup, eclipse drake Garganey for the third day, eclipse drake Pintail still, ad Peregrine, 1 Dunlin, 2 Raven, 5 Swallow > south and a pair of Stonechat.

At 14:20, Allen Holmes picked up a distant flock of large white birds to the NE of the site, on a westerly heading, and understandably thought them to be probably Swans. The birds must have been close to a mile away when first seen, but Myself, Mark Fanshawe and Robin Shenton all almost immediately got onto them with the bins. It was clearly a scope job and we were onto the birds in seconds. Instantly, it was obvious they were not the Whooper Swans we were expecting, they were Geese, the majority of which were white with black flight feathers and amongst them were at least 4 blue-morph birds. Despite the distance, they could only be Snow Geese. The flock was now quite tightly grouped meaning only a rough estimate of number could be made but there were 20+ birds, presumably part of/the flock reported on the Fylde a few hours earlier and I rang them out in the hope that whatever their origin, their movements could be further tracked. Total views were only c1 min before the flightpath took them behind Tunbrook Wood and out of sight completely.