5 Sep 2014

Red-necked Phalarope

After the excitement of the previous days Cattle Egret at Burton Mere Wetlands RSPB there was another good find when Colin Wells found a juvenile Red-necked Phalarope spinning merrily around on the scrape in front of the reception building. This is a rare bird in Cheshire & Wirral although surprisingly it was the second record for BMW this year.

I arrived to find few familiar faces watching it and spotted it straight away. Although a bit distant I started setting the camera up only for all the birds on the scrape to suddenly take flight. Luckily someone watched it disappear towards the old Inner Marsh Farm hide  so Stan & I set off for the 20 minute hike along the new boardwalk.

I found it within seconds but unfortunately it was distant and we were viewing in direct sunlight.

Ringing Scot who'd just arrived at the reception hide I hung around until he'd seen it before heading off only to return later in the evening with Steve and Mark P to spend a couple of hours searching and waiting for the elusive Cattle Egret to not show............... Still, we had the added bonus of a juvenile Little Stint and a Water rail to keep us occupied.

Spot the Little Stint - photographed with phone through telescope at 70 x magnification! They are small.....

It was nice to see a number of Common Lizards basking in the sunshine as well. I can't remember the last time I saw one in Cheshire but they seem to be thriving at Burton Mere Wetlands.

As the RSPB's logo says 'giving a home to nature.'

Whilst on the non-bird theme, a day ringing in Barry's garden Wednesday not only resulted in just over 100 birds being ringed (giving plenty of practice for trainees Helen, Scott & Colin on the darker arts of post-juvenile moult) but fantastic views of a female Southern Hawker (cheers Pete) dragonfly ovipositing in the moss along side his garden pond.

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