With the mostly mild weather we have had this week there have been some lovely days filled with migrant hawker and common darter dragonflies along with loads of comma and red admiral butterflies basking in the sunshine.
Visitors are still seeing water voles in the ditches and from Marsh Covert Hide. Another little mammal, a weasel was photographed with its dinner earlier in the week.
Linnet, siskin, stonechat, Cettis warbler all been about and redwing now coming being seen. We then had a surprise visit from a ring ouzel, seen towards the top end of the reserve in the scrub near the railway bridge.
This time of year is so special as we watch the fantastic formations of pink-footed geese and wonderful swirling flocks of black-tailed godwit and lapwing coming in. On occasion towards the end of day we are seeing mini starling murmurations where the try to settle in the reedbed but at the last minute change their minds and head towards Neston reedbed. The reedbed at Burton Mere Wetlands is still the spot for the bearded tits in the last couple of weeks. The shy an elusive kingfisher and water rail both being seen in the reedbed area too recently.
Bearded tit (Male) By Paul Jubb
Golden plover have made a return to Inner Marsh Farm Hide with thirty three birds counted on Thursday morning. Always a joy to see the awkward but striking snipe about, the various colours and shapes of ruff and the odd sighting of green sandpiper still from Marsh Covert Hide.
Amazing view of a peregrine feasting on some prey from the visitor centre. Equally exciting we have had hen harrier (ringtail) seen from the visitor centre along with action from marsh harrier, sparrowhawk, kestrel and occasional merlin.
The last few weeks star sighting is the four cattle egret that returned. True to name they have been feeding in, around and on top of the cows out at the back of the wet grassland area. Good views of a couple of them from the Visitor Centre most days.
Cattle egret By Tony Lovatt
Warden team have been busy as ever. Topping the fields at the back of the wet grassland which the wigeon and geese have been loving grazing on. The reedbed has had another haircut so the view now from reedbed screen and Marsh Covert Hide looking good. The contractors are in doing their annual ditch maintenance which is not only essential for flooding but has meant great views of the water voles.
Reedbed cutting by Liz Boone
Our October Wild Challenge family trail is still. “Wild Things at Halloween”
Tuesday 29 October is the next big Parkgate Raptorwatch. Come down and joins us to see if you can spot your first short eared owl! The hen harriers and marsh harriers are back.
Little Explorers events still going in to November. 10-11.30am. Price: £5 per child (£4 RSPB Wildlife Explorer members); accompanying siblings half-price.
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