29/12/2012 West Kirby Marina Lake

Red Breasted Merganser: A trip to see the Hobbit - it was ok, not brilliant! And after reading the sightings on the Dee Estuary website I took the opportunity to stop off and see the birds on West Kirby Marina Lake.
There were 10 RBM on the lake with 4 drakes and the rest red headed females. The tide was on its way back out but still full when I arrived and there were loads of wader movement in front of the shadow of Hilbre Island with around 100 Dunlin flying around.

Goldeneye: I also spotted a hand full of Goldeneye but only one drake. I also checked out New Brighton Marina Lake but was only rewarded with a couple a Black Headed Gulls and one Redshank of the pontoon.

26/12/2012 Leighton Moss RSPB

Teal: I was lucky enough to be dropped off at Leighton on Boxing Day, only an hour but nice to be out and about with the camera.

I didn't see all that much but this stunning drake Teal was showing well from Lillian’s Hide, now last time I was sitting here I saw my first Otter but today I was happy to settle for a few ducks.
Tree Creeper: Stuck behind a large festive Boxing Day guided walk on the narrow paths of Leighton Moss and they spotted this Tree Creeper feeding on a moss covered branch. There was also a Marsh Tit and Coal Tit feeding on the same branch where someone had placed some seed.

22/12/2012 Burton Mere Wetlands RSPB

Nuthatch: After a few days off im finally back at Burton Mere where I am never disapointed, Water Rail, male Hen Harrier and Whooper Swans makes for a good day at work.

Siskin: The feeders have been moved away from the reception building and the birds are loving the new set up. They have been placed by the meres and picnic tables where you can see Siskin, Nutchatch and loads of other woodland birds feeding up close.

The feeders will need to be topped up very regually here!

Redpoll: While I sat at the picnic table watching the Siskin fight for its spot on the bird feeder I saw breifly this Redpoll. I was only able to reel off a few shots, most of which the bird was in focus but behind the branches of the tree, this was the best of a bad bunch!

16/12/2012 Caerhun Church

Hawfinch: I was treated to a Sunday twitch by Dawn my partner who drove me to Conwy where we drove up to Caerhun. I bumped in to the very friendley Steve Culley.
As you can see I seriously struggled to get a decent shot of the bird, I was made up to see the bird through my bins which gave me excellent views but struggled with the manual focus on my camera!

This may well be the bird that got away, I'll be back and will try agin or perhpas go up to the lakes and try my luck there.

03/12/2012 Moore Nature Resreve

Smew: (female) My first Smew, ok it's not a stunning white cracked porcelain male but a red headed female and the pics aren’t great as the birds was staying some distance away from the lens but never the less a great bird.
It was a busy bird, feeding along the far side of the bank at the Phoenix Hide it seemed to be hanging around with the Tufted Ducks.

Other birds to note were Willow Tit, Reed Bunting, Greater Spotted Woodpecker and a number of Jays at the feeding station which was nicely stocked up!

I was suprised how samll this bird actualy is, only a little bigger then a Little Grebe must by far the samllest of the saw billed ducks. I know this stunning duck is a winter visitor but I was suprised to read (BTO) that their UK population is only 180 individuals.

Green Woodpecker: Another good tick of the day had to be this Green Woodie which was feeding on the grass bank at the foot of the Phoenix Hide. I must have missed it as I only caught it as it flew in to an old dead tree.

02/12/2012 Burton Mere Wetlands RSPB

Water Rail: Burton Mere has to be the best place to see Water Rail, this secretive bird has been showing all week like a star!

Ok, more of the same, perhaps! But what a bird. I know they are wide spread and common but they are so elusive and shy however this guy loves the lime light.

01/12/2012 Burton Mere Wetlands RSPB

Brambling: More Brambling same place same time-ish but this time a female!

Keep your eyes trained on the floor as you leave the walkways out of the recepition hide as these birds are acivley feeding on the ground in theses areas.

Siskin: More Siskin this time upside down, theses birds are so agile, feeding on the very tips of the branches with such ease! Birds are brilliant.

Fist of December, not far until Christmas and all I want  is a Desert Wheatear! I just haven’t had the time to get down to Rhyl yet, gutted. Fingers crossed it stays around!

30/11/2012 Burton Mere Wetlands RSPB

Siskin: One of my favourite birds of the winter, these little yellowish green finches are everywhere at Burton Mere.
But unlike some lucky people you won’t find them down on the feeders, well not yet anyways! There is still a ton of natural food for them up in the alder trees around the meres.
Other *STAR* birds around at Burton Mere include the wonderful Water Rail – been showing incredibly well in the newly cut reeds net to the reception hide. Brambling can still be seen feeding on the ground within the mixed finch flocks.
The male Hen Harrier has also been up and about thsi week.