Our January Bird and Wildlife Group meeting included our late Christmas lunch. On a sunny and bright morning 17 of us met at the Three Horseshoes pub, Althorne, at 10 a.m. We ordered our meal, changed into our wellies, as we knew it was going to be very muddy, left our cars in the car park and started our walk down to the seawall.
The footpath is almost opposite the pub and is lined with trees. In the trees we spotted a Robin, Blue Tits, Starlings, Sparrows and there were Rooks, Black-headed Gulls and Wood Pigeons in the nearby fields. A Magpie flew overhead. One member also spotted on the ground Jew’s Ear Fungus.
Most of us didn’t know this footpath existed and when we started out assumed that it was just a footpath to the seawall, so were most surprised when we came to a relatively newly planted woodland and a lake with a small island in the middle; quite a beautiful setting and right on our doorstep! On the lake we spotted Wigeon, Teal, Canada Goose and Mallard. Goldfinches, Greenfinch, Great Tit and Blackbird were in the nearby trees and a Wren was heard
When reaching the seawall Redshank, Lapwing, Curlew and Oystercatchers were feeding in the mud and Little Grebes were diving in the river. A flock of Brent Geese flew by overhead.
The most spectacular sight of the day was when around 700 lapwings took to the sky time and time again, sometimes in smaller groups and sometimes altogether.
Walking further round the seawall we saw a Little Egret and a number of Meadow Pipits, also a Fox standing by a second lake on which were a number of Mallards.
It was now time to walk back to the pub for our lunch; the sun was still shining and we all remarked how fortunate we had been with the weather, the two previous days being rain and high winds and a not much better forecast for the following two days.
After enjoying a very good lunch we all agreed that it had been a great day all round.
Birds seen: Robin, Blue Tit, Starling, Sparrow, Rook, Great Tit, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Blackbird, Black-headed Gull, Wood Pigeon, Magpie, Wigeon, Teal, Canada Geese, Mallard, Redshank, Lapwing, Curlew, Oystercatcher, Little Grebe, Brent Geese, Meadow Pipit, Little Egret and Wren (heard).
Other: Fox, Jew’s Ear Fungus