23 Nov 2008

Death on the Marshes.

With Twite being reported on the Dee Marshes at Burton yesterday I took a trip down with Molly at first light this morning to try and find them. It was a desoltate morning with squally hail showers and high winds making birding difficult.

No sign of the Twite but plenty of other finches and winter thrushes around with the odd Yellowhammer and Skylark mixed in for good measure. No Short-eared Owls this morning but a single Merlin & a huge female Peregrine initially sitting on a post but later causing mayhem over the Decca pools as it chased down and killed a female Shoveller!

Intitially she made several low level pass over the pools flushing all the Lapwings and ducks in one panic stricken flock before choosing her prey and flying it down. She knocked it to the ground and then circled high before landing and devouring her kill out of sight. An awesome display. Hoping for either a stray Bean Goose or Whitefront I scanned the distant flocks of Greylags but managed only a solitary Pinkfoot.

Apart from this mornings trip to the Dee the birding highlights have been a bit slim this weekend. A single Crossbill over Stanney Woods yesterday appears to have coincided with a movement in Cheshire with birds being reported at West Kirby and Delamere.

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