Walking with Wildlife
The ramblings of a man with a camera.
2021 - Month by Month
Monday morning on the first day of meteorological Spring and the bright Sun was hanging in a clear blue sky. There was hardly any wind so the old saying of "In like a Lion...", may have to be amended to take climate change into consideration. Spot of the day was three Redwing feeding in one of the paddocks at Canal Side Farm.
The first week of the month has seen local farmers busy with muck-spreading and harrowing. Huge numbers of Gulls and Corvid have been descending on the fields at Wheelock and Malkin's Bank. A Buzzard was seen feeding in the field behind Lock 64 on three occasions this week. Walks have been confined to the Rail Trail, towpath and Golf Course but on the seventh I walked to Borrow Pit Meadows.
On the way I bumped into Mick, the local Falconer, who had just nipped home for a cup of tea in between jobs. He invited me into his garden as he was letting some of his birds out to perch in the fresh air.Talk about right place at the right time. I never go this way on a Sunday, because it is usually too busy, but something made me veer from my usual routine and walk past Mick's house. Male & Female Harris Hawk and a Gyr x Saker Falcon made me feel like a child in a sweet shop! Amazing afternoon.
First Periwinkle flower 08 March
First Comfrey flower 10 March
First Coltsfoot flower 11 March
A pair of Treecreepers where seen on the Golf Course on the 10th but nothing else of note until the12th when I walked along the towpath to Plant Lane then down to Watch Lane Flash. A Kingfisher was briefly seen at Ilse Pool but, apart from a solitary Great Crested Grebe, there was nothing on the water. I visited Fields Farm Flash on the way back and at first glance could see nothing on the water or on the banks. A walk to the bottom end of the flash disturbed 6 Wigeon but they just flew around then landed again. Couple of pics on facebook. On the way back a Little Egret flew overhead from East to West and looked to be heading for Elton Hall Flash.
Nothing much of note again until 22nd when I watched a pair of Grey Wagtails feeding at Lock 62. Same day, and almost home, I watched a Kestrel chase a Magpie into a Tree near Dancing Bridge. The Magpie escaped; the Kestrel got its breath back and flew off towards Waters Meet. Blue Tits, Great Tits, Nuthatches and Robins are pairing up and plenty of activity aound the local Nest Boxes.
24th - Coffee and Cake at Wheelock Hall Farm with Bees and Butterflies on the wing and the scent of blossom in the air.
26th - A walk along Bradwall Road as far as Wood Lane then turned around and returned via Walnut Tree Lane and Pillar Box Lane.
29th - Rail Trail, Hassall Road, Sandbach Footpath 24, Maddock's Wood then back up to the Rail Trail. Facebook Album
30th - Bus to Wistaston and a walk with DW to Queen's Park, Crewe. Lucky to watch a Fox sunbathing from the sewer track on the way to the park. Barnacle Goose is still on the Park Lake but the Little Owl was hiding. Too busy for it to come out.
31st - A glorious day to end the Month on. I think they said on the news it was the hottest March day on record.
A 9-miler from Wheelock Wharf to Elton Hall Flash via Moston Footpath 21 and Clay Lane. Fields Farm Flash album on facebook. Other albums still in the pipeline. Yearly first "Birds of Note" were Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler and Black Tailed Godwit in breeding plumage.