Chorlton Water Park 06.10.15

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Photo CG

An enthusiastic group of TT members gathered in the car park of Chorlton Water Park on a bright, sunny and warm – yes, warm – morning. Those who had arrived early were had been greeted by the colourful sight of a handful of parakeets on the feeders, along with the more usual suspects – wood pigeon, magpie, nuthatch, great tit- and, of course, grey squirrel.

After a short ‘briefing’ – and a brief encounter with the new WEA group and leader, the group wandered down to the water’s edge to see what ‘was about’. Canada goose, black-headed gulls and coot were evident in good numbers, while mute swan, gadwall, cormorant, mallard and tufted duck were also noted by all. It was then agreed that a different route to normal should be followed, turning left and going in a clockwise direction around the site (shock, horror- what would DS think of this?). A visit to the small pond added nothing to the list, but further on a brimstone delighted all, as it fluttered past. On reaching the river, it too seemed to be devoid of birdlife, but on closer inspection a grey wagtail was spotted hopping around in the rocks at the water’s edge.
Over the bridge another, left turn was taken, through woods and open land, but sightings were disappointing despite the abundance of berries and seeds all around. There were fleeting glimpses for some of great spotted woodpecker, jay and a distant buzzard, as the route took us to the ‘place of the smelly goats’. A flock of busy long-tailed tits entertained all flitting about in nearby trees, whilst a hovering kestrel and a few starlings on a distant pylon helped to boost the number of sightings.
En route back to the water, several speckled wood butterflies enjoyed the unexpected autumnal warmth – and on arrival great crested grebe and moorhen were seen.

Photo RD
Photo RD

A now satisfied TT returned to their cars, noting grey heron and lesser black-backed gull along the way – and greenfinch and goldfinch on the feeders. For those who stayed the extra hour, a flock of house sparrows presented themselves beside the visitor centre, before all returned home to avoid a drenching from the now threatening clouds. (MH)

Bird List (BP)

  1. Great Crested Grebe
  2. Cormorant
  3. Grey Heron
  4. Mute Swan
  5. Canada Goose
  6. Gadwall
  7. Mallard
  8. Tufted Duck
  9. Buzzard
  10. Kestrel
  11. Moorhen
  12. Coot
  13. Lesser Black-backed Gull (2nd winter)?
  14. Black-headed Gull
  15. Feral Pigeon
  16. Woodpigeon
  17. Rose-ringed Parakeet
  18. Great Spotted Woodpecker
  19. Grey Wagtail
  20. Dunnock
  21. Robin
  22. Blackbird
  23. Long-tailed Tit
  24. Coal Tit
  25. Blue Tit
  26. Great Tit
  27. Nuthatch
  28. Jay
  29. Magpie
  30. Carrion Crow
  31. Starling
  32. House Sparrow
  33. Greenfinch
  34. Goldfinch
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