Woolston Eyes Monthly Sightings


A Black Swan has has been present on the ox-bow below No.2 bed for the past two days. It is in the company of 2 Mute Swans

Submitted by: David Spencer



This cygnet present on No.3 bed on 12th November bore a green darvic ring CLX6 and is a female ringed on 22-10-18 at Spike Island, Widnes

Submitted by: David Spencer



WeBS Count carried out on !0th November.

Little Grebe 6, Great crested Grebe 8, Cormorant 11, Mute Swan 14, Grey Heron 8 Shelduck 5, Canada Goose 8, Gadwall 50, Teal 152, Mallard 77, Pintail 1, Shoveler 69, Tufted Duck 227, Goldeneye 1, Water Rail 2, Moorhen 49, Coot 23, Black tailed Godwit 12, Snipe 4, Kingfisher 1, Black headed Gull 128, Lesser Black backed Gull 1, Hen Harrier 1 , Buzzard 1.

Submitted by: Brian Martin



That was a brilliant morning! We met at dawn and wandered into No.3 bed to start the monthly Wetland Birds Count. Our first reward came in the shape of a ring-tailed Hen Harrier which slid in from the west, flushing a load of Teal and dropping into the reeds on the east side of the bed. While Hen Harriers used to be a regular sight at Woolston in the 1980s the persecution and decline of the English breeding population has reduced them to a less-than-annual visitor. As we left the bed we scanned for the harrier from the South Screen, where a Stoat and two Water Rails gave great views. We then ambled down to Bollin Point, where a Raven and a Buzzard were duelling over Butchersfield Tip and a Goldeneye was with the commoner wildfowl. Returning to No.3 bed we watched two Crossbills, another species we don’t record every year, fly west while a Merlin went rattling east along the line of the Ship Canal. Back in the bed, highlights included: 1 Brambling, 1 Siskin, 150 Fieldfares, 8 Black-tailed Godwits and 1 Snipe. The link is to a video clip showing a few seconds of the Hen Harrier plus Water Rail and Brambling. https://youtu.be/nZv1okHr2oo Cheers David Bowman (with David Spencer, Helen Wynn, Sue Haddock and Brian Baird)

Submitted by: David Bowman



A good day completing a survey of the birds on Nos.2 and 3 beds. The morning was really pleasant before heavy rain set in by mid-afternoon. The link is to a short video showing: one of the 200 or so Teal currently present, a juvenile Carrion Crow feeding with an adult, Black-tailed Godwits feeding actively, some of the flock of 100 + Greenfinches coming down to drink, the juvenile Kestrel which has been frequenting the Morgan Hide scrape for the past few weeks, a drake Shoveler, one of the 50 or so present and the two Goosanders (a scarce Woolston bird) still present on the Ship Canal by the Penny Ferry.


Cheers David Bowman

Submitted by: David Bowman


David Bowman


This was one of those autumn mornings when you’re never quite sure what might turn up next. Shortly after sunrise a Merlin, moving at high speed, came skimming over the water. It flashed past the feeding station, snatched a fleeing Greenfinch and hurtled back in the direction it came from. This little immature female has been hanging round the bed for a month or so, now. It’s unusual for Merlins to frequent feeding stations but I guess the open aspect and the 100+ Greenfinches regularly present are contributory factors. A small thrush roost on the north bank then disgorged 24 Redwings and 8 Fieldfares, though we still await a really major arrival of thrushes. A quick jaunt onto No.4 bed to check water levels and then we were back on No.3 bed. Sightings of interest included: a female Pintail under the footbridge, 3 Bramblings, a Woodcock flushed from the east bank, 2 Siskins, 2 Lesser Redpolls, 3 Cetti’s Warblers, 10 Black-tailed Godwits, 1 Snipe and another 80 Fieldfare which dropped into the centre of the bed. Finally, as I was leaving, I checked out the two Goosanders (see photo)found by Carey Randall near the Penny Ferry. All in all, an excellent morning. Cheers David Bowman (with David Spencer)

Submitted by: David Bowman


Keith Gallie


A nice few hours on Number 3 bed with a large group of long tailed tits moving about, 2 goldcrests small flock of fieldfares flying over, 3 buzzards enjoying the thermals, a kestrel flew right in front of the Morgan hide at speed, a few godwits in front of the hide with one snipe in front also.

Submitted by: Keith Gallie