This morning’s three hours birding at Pilling found a few bits and pieces but after continued Northerly winds new-in migrants were hard to find.
I stopped first near the sewage works where a Stoat appeared as if from nowhere, took a look around and then crossed the track and out towards the Broadfleet, or Pilling Water as the locals know this ditch that drains into Morecambe Bay.
There was a single male Wheatear along the fence line and it too watched the Stoat sneak down the bank and out of sight. In the sewage works compound a pair of Pied Wagtail and the male Kestrel from the nearby pair. Like many Spring migrants, the male Wheatears arrive before the females, a strategy which allows males to claim and set up territories for when the females arrive.
Fluke Hall was quite sheltered, even warm but lacked the now overdue Spring song of Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler or Blackcap. Instead came the chattering of Tree Sparrows, Goldfinches and Greenfinches and the loud song of four Song Thrushes, the number a welcome improvement on recent years. I caught a glimpse of one of the Nuthatch pair, the birds having gone very secretive almost to the point that until this week when they collected nest material, I thought they had left the area.
Another Kestrel sat high in the tree tops close to the nest box where by now the female has probably laid at least some of her clutch of 5 eggs. The resident Pied Wagtails were on their usual rooftop feeding spot along the lane, and about 40 or more Woodpigeons clattered their way through the wood.
There was nothing at the car park so I followed 2 Little Egrets along the sea wall towards the seaward end of Pilling Water. Along here were a pair of Reed Bunting, 7 Meadow Pipit, 7 Skylark, 1 Grey Heron, 1 Snipe, 2 Teal, 18 Shelduck, 43 Redshank, 20+ Lapwing, 12 Oystercatcher, 2 more Little Egret and a single Whooper Swan. The swan flew up and out into Morecambe Bay where on a clear day it’s possible see Walney Island to the North West, the route the swan should soon take towards Iceland.
Pilling sea wall
A pair of Greylags have set up territory about here and I found them lording it over their patch where there’s not much competition save for a pair of Mute Swan. Who’s going to argue with these two heavy weights?
Back home there seems to be more Goldfinch about the feeders, perhaps a sign of new birds and warmer weather? I also saw a pair of Treecreepers searching up and down our largest apple tree. That’s quite a good but not unprecedented sighting for the garden so let’s hope it’s a good omen for Another Bird Blog.