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Monday, 13 February 2017

Wild Geese chasing in the West

Out with Mark yesterday (Sunday) and we decided on Lancashire one because we like a bit of wild Geese chasing and two it was a better weather forecast, we were trying for the Red Breasted Goose first and headed for Pilling Moss where it was reported Saturday but there was no sign of any Geese at all there in the morning, we had a drive around the area and eventually came across another birder scanning a large flock of Pinkfeet near the village of Stake Pool, we joined him but a good couple of scans only revealed two or three White Fronts with them however we did note that other small flocks were dropping in on a regular basis, we decided to hang around for a while in which time we were joined by a couple of our Leeds mates, Richard and Mike who'd had the same idea as us and after 45mins or more I followed a flock flying in noting them to be all White Fronts for a change and as they landed there it was in the middle of them, really chuffed with that and it gave good scope views, we informed our mates from Rochdale who were also in the area and a very grateful Dave, Bob and Steve who had missed this Goose several times arrived a bit later and luckily it never flew off before they got there, after a good bit of banter and socialising we all went our separate ways although we did bump into each other a couple more times later in the day, next up for us was Upper Thurnham where a Todd’s Canada Goose had been seen earlier, didn’t manage to find it but all three species of Swan were nice to see, then nearby Condor Green where we had good views of a Great White Egret on the Lancaster Canal and Black Tailed Godwit and Spotted Redshank by the river Condor. There had been no news on the blue phase Snow Goose all week near Nateby with one local telling us it was seen to fly off last Monday but another told us a mate of his had seen it a couple of days ago in another area so after a late lunch we thought we’d give it a try, we got to the place we’d been told but there was nothing there so we decided to try the area it was frequenting last weekend, again nothing but as we turned the car round and headed back Mark espied a flock of Greylags in a field next to the entrance road to the Woodlands Trust CP, we stopped and a quick scan soon found the bird with them, lady luck was certainly with us today, we drove down the entrance road and got a bit closer for some pics then headed off to Southport for our final target birds, the Cattle Egrets at Birkdale Cop, it was quite a long drive and when we got there we couldn’t believe we were in the right place however a reread of the pager message took us down a track at the end of some cottages and there in the field behind were six bonny little Cattle Egrets strutting through it although fairly distant right over the other side, we ended the day at Marshside RSPB but there was nothing much of note apart from a few Pinkfeet coming in to roost. 
the Red Breasted Goose arrived with some White Fronts

Bewick's Swan at Upper Thurnham

and lots of Whoopers

a few Waders at Condor Green included Curlew

Black Tailed Godwit

and Spotted Redshank

the blue phase Lesser Snow Goose at Nateby

one of the very distant Cattle Egrets at Birkdale Cop, very nice to see six together though

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