7 Sep 2008

The return of summer and a Grey Phalarope in Cheshire.

At last summer returned if only for one day. The 2008 definition of summer is that the windscreen wipers are only on intermittent rather than maximum. So it was today - the only thing that got wet was my foot as I trod in an unseen rut whilst pushing through the undergrowth engulfing the path down to the Weaver at Frodsham.

An crap seawatching session on the N Wirral coast Saturday with Allan, from one of the bus shelters that double up as a hide and Frank at the nearby Gunsites filled us with gloom and despondency. A brisk northerly was blowing but only a handful of Gannets and Common Scoters were seen. The gloom depended when news came out when it was dark that a juvenile Grey Phalarope had been seen at Frodsham 'between the Weaver bend and No. 5 tank. Now, to those that know Frodsham, that makes it in the middle of a flooded field! With so many Grey Phalaropes in the Country we'd been expecting to see one during our seawatch.

Frank got up early today and searched the area to no avail. Then news came out that the bird was still present. Cue frantic phonecalls. No one knew anything! Luckily Wirral birder David King refound the bird on the River Weaver between the Weaver bend and No.1 tank.......................the mystery was solved and a grateful handful of Cheshire birders converged to form a mini twitch.

Walking Stanney Woods with Molly Saturday morning was productive when a Wood Warbler betrayed its presence in the canopy by giving its distinctive trill. It was hard to pick out but a good autumn record and only my second here -the first being a singing male several years ago.

Other local birds included two Grey Wagtails that dropped onto the pond alongside the house to feed on the rapidly disappearing muddy margin.

A quick hello to Allan's mate Ken who spent sometime seawatching wih us yesterday and left with the parting words: 'I don't want to read my name on your @@&8$£ng blog'. Cheers Ken -glad you enjoy reading it and as promised I didn't write anything rude!

Finally, it's a big week in the Woollen household this week. My daughters getting married Thursday (to an Aussie) and they're emigrating on the 18th. So, no birding for me this week I'm afraid.....................................

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