Tuesday, 4 April 2017

05/04/17

Great to get out in the field after what seems like forever. This morning was spent with Luke this for an investigation into some of the more restricted grounds surrounding Bidston Moss in order to discover more species, in particular insects for our joint Pan-List if the site. The sites Main Lake was host to 6 Barnacle Geese (flew over heading east, most likely part of the feral flock from Caldy), with 2 Great crested Grebe, 2 Mute Swan (on nest with no sign of eggs), 3 Common Moorhen, 8 Eurasian Coot, 4 Mallard with highlight being 2 calling LITTLE GREBE heard coming from the reeds close to that of the swan nest. Little Grebe along with several other species documented this spring at the moss by myself & Luke are something we'll be keeping a close eye on for breeding and if your visiting then please inform of your sightings.

Common Chiffchaff (Phylloscopus collybita) - Image by Elliot Montieth

Great crested Grebe (Podiceps cristatus) - Image by Elliot Montieth
Luke guided me carefully guided us round to the wasteland and reed bed (the largest yet most under watched area of the site!) were the hunt began with Yellow-meadow (22), Myrmica sp (1) & Black Garden (5) nests, interesting to see that there was a lot of interaction between the Black Garden & Yellow-meadow. In terms of butterflies Comma (1), Peacock (4), Small Tortoiseshell (3) & Orange-Tip (2) were also being counted along with 3 species of Millipede, 5 Woodlouse, 2 Earthworm with a Caddisfly larvae sp & Ruby-tailed Wasp being the highlights. This is only a small percentage of the biodiversity we've documented since the beginning of the year (bird records extend to that since the site was first created), with more exact accounts recorded on mine and Luke's joint excel spread sheet.

Yellow-Meadow Ant (Lasius flavus) - Image by Luke Anderson

Comma (Polygonia c-album) - Image by Elliot Montieth



Luke investigating one of the several Yellow-Meadow Ant nests located today
After having spent 2 hours exploring the Main Lakes surrounding were we chanced upon Bidston's first "grounded" RING OUZEL (flushed and not relocated), a male Common Reed Bunting and the sites first European Sand Martin (3) of the year as they were observed hawking over the lake. Relocating ourselves to the Back Pools via the Woodland with 26 Common Chiffchaff & 2 Willow Warblers singing we soon came to the pools were we rounded off our trip to keep watch over the pair of Shoveler that have over wintered and paired up. Breeding Northern Shovelers would certainly be a surprised and first documented record for the site and with the birds remaining for so long and showing interest in the west pool the breeding does appear to be a likely scenario. Besides the Northern Shovelers that were present and keeping distance in the safety of the reeds, 2 Tufted Ducks were also present with the drake showing some signs of hybridisation (indicating migrant birds) with Luke picking up on the sites first Barn Swallow of the season.

Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica) - Image by Elliot Montieth

Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus) - Image by Elliot Montieth

Observers: Elliot Montieth & Luke Anderson

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