I checked Fluke Hall again this morning because after Thursday’s influx of Goldcrests I wanted to see how many were left after the clearer skies of last night. Seemingly most of them had moved on, with just a single sighting, the barely audible Goldcrest contact calls of yesterday replaced today by the ringing sounds of at least 3 Siskins high overhead.
It was very quiet otherwise, with a dozen or so Meadow Pipits and a single Pied Wagtail. On the blog yesterday I forgot to mention the 5 wary Barnacle Geese on the Hi-Fly stubble. The Barnacles were still there today, looking equally as wild and suspicious as the few Pink-footed Geese they fed with.
The Barnacle Goose has an interesting myth that dates back to the 12th century. These geese were thought to have hatched from barnacles "organisms that grow on timber exposed to salt water" furthermore creating a barnacle tree in which the geese lived in their shell hanging from the tree. The purpose of this myth was to allow religious folk to eat the meat during Lent under the delusion the tasty flesh of the goose was fish. It wasn't until the 17th century that scientists debunked the myth when they discovered that in the remote Arctic regions Barnacle Geese built nests in trees on high cliffs and when the goslings hatched, they fell into the water. This discovery put an end to the mystical tree growing geese and at the same time provided the species with a name.
No such legend for the White-fronted Goose that simply gets its name from their white patch above the bill. Near Lane Ends I found two in the same field again, one with a gammy leg which may account for them not venturing too far lately.
Nothing much to report from Lane Ends/Pilling Water sea wall stretch except the usual 2 Kestrel, 5 Little Egret, 1 Pied Wagtail, 12 Meadow Pipits, 1 Greenshank and 2 displaying Buzzards today. At the plantation I heard more Siskins overhead, watched a single Redpoll head north east and noted a fresh-in Reed Bunting. On the water - 2 Goldeneye and 2 Little Grebe.
The Kestrel hovered into the wind and the light, and at the wrong angle to my camera.
Back at home 2 more Buzzards sailed over, heading out towards the copses near Staynall and the River Wyre.