The biggest story from the region was the appearance of a first-winter male Pied Wheatear on the sea wall at Meols, Cheshire (7th to 9th), which was particularly bold, allowing photographers to have a field day. It was the first record of the species in that county.
CHESHIRE HIGHLIGHTS: A Pied Wheatear was at Dove Point, Meols (6th-9th). Burton Mere Wetlands had two Cattle Egrets and three Great White Egrets (3rd-10th), a Hen Harrier (9th-15th), two Bearded Tits, and a Short-eared Owl (11th). A Cattle Egret flew over Hale (3rd), with two at Puddington (6th-16th), one at Marbury CP (15th), and two at Great Sutton (29th). A Siberian Chiffchaff was at Hale (9th). A Great Grey Shrike was at Little Neston (11th).
WOOLSTON EYES: A visible migration watch (3rd) produced 299 Lapwings, 77 Stock Doves, 213 Redwings, 5,168 Starlings and 15 Buzzards. Ringing on No1 bed gave Coal Tit, Goldcrest, Blackbird, Blackcap, Woodcock, Firecrest, Chiffchaff and Long-tailed Tit. Records included two Cetti’s Warblers, 50 Lesser Redpolls, 300 Pinkfeet, a Kingfisher, Raven, Peregrine, Tawny Owl, Merlin, two Water Rails, 200 Redwings, 20 Skylarks, 100 Reed Buntings, three Whooper Swans, 350 Fieldfares, a Little Egret and Green Sandpiper. No3 bed ringing had Magpie, Redwing, Bullfinch, Goldcrest, Lesser Redpoll, Reed Bunting, Meadow Pipit, Linnet, Snipe, Jay, Chiffchaff and Long-tailed Tit. Records included 11 Black-tailed Godwits, three Wigeon, 200 Teal, 100 Greenfinches, a Hen Harrier, Tawny Owl, Woodcock, two Crossbills, 100 Fieldfares, 270 Pied Wagtails and five Redshanks. The count (10th) included 77 Mallards, 69 Shovelers, 227 Tufted Ducks, 50 Gadwall, a Pintail and Goldeneye. Dave Steel
CUMBRIA HIGHLIGHTS: South Walney had a Black Brant (10th-18th), three Scaup (10th-24th), a Hooded Crow (16th), Hen Harrier (17th), Ring Ouzel (2nd) and 30 Twite (3rd). A Barred Warbler was at Sandscale Haws (21st). A Todd’s Canada Goose was with Barnacle Geese at Anthorn (25th), and at Cardurnock (29th-30th). A Great White Egret was at Sedbergh (2nd). Four Scaup were at Siddick Ponds (4th), with a Bittern there (26th). A Yellow-browed Warbler was at Kendal (5th). Thirty Snow Buntings were at Campfield Marsh and two on Helvellyn (17th). A Little Stint was at Port Carlisle (11th-16th). A Velvet Scoter was with 150 Common Scoters at Parton (16th). A Scaup was at Windermere (18th). A Hooded Crow was at Foulney Island (18th). A Black-throated Diver and Great Northern Diver were at Workington (23rd). Waxwings included 12 at Far Arnside (24th), two at Wetheral (26th-28th), four at University of Cumbria, Carlisle (30th), 30 at Dalston (27th) and one in Penrith (1st).
GREATER MANCHESTER HIGHLIGHTS: A possible Pallid Swift was over
Heaton Park Reservoir (11th-12th). A Yellow-browed Warbler was in Cheadle (9th). A Velvet Scoter was at High Rid Reservoir (24th-30th). A Great White Egret was at Pennington Flash (1st & 20th), with a Cattle Egret there (2nd). A Smew was on Castleshaw Reservoirs (10th-17th). Two Waxwings were in Altrincham (24th). ELTON RESERVOIR:
There was a Merlin (24th), 15 Whooper Swans (26th), a Rock Pipit, Stonechat, Raven and two Little Egrets. MERSEY VALLEY:
A Yellow-legged Gull was on Sale WP (13th-21st). Six Ring-necked Parakeets were also there (17th), with 10 at Chorlton Ees (2nd). A Chiffchaff was at Shell (20th) and a Blackcap at Rye Bank Fields, Chorlton (18th). PENNINGTON FLASH:
A Caspian Gull roosted (21st-29th) as did an Iceland Gull (24th-29th). A Yellow-legged Gull was seen (16th & 21st). There was a Jack Snipe (23rd), Common Scoter (21st), Ring-necked Parakeet (18th-19th), 20 Whooper Swans, two Mediterranean Gulls and three Little Egrets. OTHER SITES:
A Waxwing flew over Winter Hill (2nd). Horwich Moors visible migration totals included 50 Crossbills, 1,650 Bramblings, three Merlins, 21 Whooper Swans and six Barnacle Geese. An Iceland Gull, two Caspian Gulls, three Brent Geese (17th) and two Common Scoter (19th) were at Audenshaw Reservoirs. An Iceland Gull was at Gorton (12th & 30th) and at Atherton (24th-30th). Castleshaw Reservoirs had a Red-breasted Merganser (10th-24th) and two Whooper Swans (24th). Dr Paul Brewster (01606 590 491)
LANCASHIRE AND NORTH MERSEYSIDE HIGHLIGHTS: Lancashire’s fourth Dusky Warbler was at Ainsdale mid-month. October’s American Wigeon was seen early in the month at Hesketh Out Marsh, with a Long-billed Dowitcher there (15th-16th). A Green-winged Teal was at Martin Mere (6th). Eight Cattle Egrets were at Marshside (3rd), with one at Wesham (4th). FYLDE REGION:
A roost flight count of 13,750 Pink-footed Geese was over Pilling Lane Ends (11th). A flock on Lytham Moss peaked at 10,000 (18th). With them were two Barnacle Geese and two Greenland Whitefronts. Several sites at Over Wyre gave a count of 450 Whooper Swans, with four Bewick’s Swans there (27th). Around 100 Whooper Swans were at several south Fylde sites. Seawatching off Blackpool included 64 Red-throated Divers (22nd). Fifteen Avocets were in the Ribble channel opposite Warton Marsh mid-month. Five thousand Lapwings and 2,000 Golden Plovers were on the Lune at Glasson. Grey Plovers totalled 125 at Fluke Hall. Six Marsh Harriers and two Hen Harriers frequented both sides of the Ribble. Another Hen Harrier and Marsh Harrier were in the Pilling/cockerham Marsh area. A Short-eared Owl flew over St Anne’s shore (7th). A Great White Egret was regular on Warton Marsh. There were 100 Fieldfares at Freckleton Naze (12th) and Wesham (15th). Ninety Twite were at Knott End jetty. A late Wheatear was at Ridge Farm, Pilling (2nd-6th). A Snow Bunting was in the Squires Gate area (8th and 17th). Six Stonechats were on Lytham Moss. There were 17 Yellowhammers at two Over Wyre sites (26th). A Cetti’s Warbler was recorded at Preesall Flashes (4th). Three Crossbills flew over Fairhaven (18th). MARTON MERE, BLACKPOOL:
Highlights included a Barn Owl, Short-eared Owl (3rd), two Bitterns, three Ring-necked Parakeets, 250 Coots, three Little Grebes, 56 Wigeon, three Goosanders, three Goldeneyes, 80 Fieldfares (12th), a Treecreeper (21st), and a Bullfinch. SW LANCASHIRE-N MERSEYSIDE:
A Great Grey Shrike was at Ainsdale (3rd). Three Great White Egrets were at Hesketh Out Marsh (1st), before dispersing to other Ribble Estuary sites. An invasion of Bearded Tits included 11 at Martin Mere and Lunt Meadows, with several at Marshside. Maurice Jones
Great Northern Diver, Marine Lake, West Kirby, Wirral, Merseyside, 30 November