Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Jan 31st

In really poor weather this morning Andy found the female Long-tailed Duck again right in the middle of the mere along with the female Goldeneye . Blown my theory out the window saying it had gone , oh well talk to the experts and they will put you right. When I arrived it took sometime again to locate , managed a couple more distant photos . Twenty three Pochard are still hanging around the western side with six females amongst them. Nothing much to report on my walk around it seems as we are back to three Little Grebe but I won't say anything just incase it appears. There are at least four pairs of Bullfinch still and around 15 to 20 Siskin .A single Grey Heron was in the top wood by the small pool and Good numbers of Goldcrest around.We finished the month with 52 species being recorded.
Long-tailed Duck if you look close enough it's there somewhere.

Monday, 30 January 2017

Old Sightings

Just spoke with Jack Swan who had Water Rail on 15th December , five Teal second week of January and a pair of Gadwall last week on 25th. The Water Rail as far as we know is a first record for the site. If you have any records please e mail me at astburywildlife@yahoo.co.uk

Jan 30th

Pochard numbers are down with seventeen counted today but I managed to locate the female Goldeneye it was diving close into the eastern shore just off the fishing platform's. Also noted several Goldcrest , three pairs of Bullfinch , still good numbers of Siskin but I can't find a Lesser Redpoll amongst them . Mistle Thrush , Song Thrush and Redwing still in evidence but again no sign of L T Duck so presumably long gone.
Goldeneye (female).

Sunday, 29 January 2017

Jan 29th

24 Pochard on the mere this morning but no sign of Long-tailed Duck or the female Goldeneye , but the pair of Shoveler's have reappeared. Fly overs included a single Cormorant and Buzzard and a flock of 31 Redwing . Noted on walk around Treecreeper , Coal Tit , Siskin , Bullfinch , Goldfinch and two Song Thrush.
Pochard (female).

Saturday, 28 January 2017

Jan 28th

I could not locate the female Long-tailed Duck this morning but a fisherman said he had seen it earlier on . I found my first Nuthatch on site this species is very scarce here , along with two Tree creepers and four pair of Bullfinch feeding together quite a site. The single female Goldeneye was still on the mere along with twenty two Pochard and 145 Coot . Several Goldcrest noted on my walk around and at least 15 Siskin possibly more . Other species noted were Chaffinch , Jay , Redwing , Coal Tit and L B B Gull.

Friday, 27 January 2017


Today's two Waxwings were by berry bushes in the east corner of the mere along the path leading into Astbury Street at 12-30 . (R Stonier).

Jan 27th

Late News Two Waxwings east corner of mere at mid-day, this is a first for the site....( Russell Stonier). The female Long-tailed Duck has now been present for sixteen days giving good views to all who have visited . Also present a single female Goldeneye , four Little Grebe , twenty two Pochard and sixty one Tufted Duck. A walk around the mere produced twenty plus Siskin a single Bullfinch , and a mixed flock of Long-tailed , Blue , Coal and Great Tits. Not many people around this morning due to the cold weather so three Song Thrush's feed without much disturbance on the grass just in front of the car park image below .
Song Thrush.

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Request for Record's

This is a request for old records of missing species from Astbury Mere. Could you please look through your old records we are specifically looking for dates for Arctic Tern , Snipe , Woodcock , Little Egrets , Water Rail , Tawny Owl , Osprey , Cuckoo , Spotted Flycatcher , Pied Flycatcher and Wood Warbler . If you have any of these please get in touch by e mail address on the right of this blog , or inform John Spottiswood who will pass the information onto me . Thank you in advance.

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Jan 24th

Long-tailed Duck female still present also one female Goldeneye and four Little Grebe. (A Goodwin )

Sunday, 22 January 2017

Jan 22nd

Long-tailed Duck still this morning also three female Goldeneye . ( A Goodwin )

Saturday, 21 January 2017


The female Long-tailed Duck still frequenting the mere also female Goldeneye and the pair of Shoveler re-located asleep in the middle. Also noted three Little Grebe , a pair of Bullfinch and around a dozen Siskin.

Friday, 20 January 2017

Purple Patch

A bit of a purple patch this week on the mere with Long-tailed Duck , Common Scoter , Whooper Swan's , Goldeneye and a pair of Shoveler. Now why can't it be like this all the time.

Jan 20th

Seven Whooper Swan's briefly at 10-00 before being chased off by local Mute Swan's. Also female Long-tailed Duck still present. (M Wootton)

Thursday, 19 January 2017

Jan 19th

No sign of yesterday's female Common Scoter but female Long-tailed Duck and Goldeneye still present. (A Goodwin )

Wednesday, 18 January 2017

Jan 18th

Female Common Scoter now on the mere along with the Long-tailed Duck a single drake Wigeon and a female Goldeneye . (John Spottiswood) It's the first Common Scoter record for three years.

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Jan 17th

Long-tailed Duck still present this morning.

Monday, 16 January 2017

Jan 16th

Long-tailed Duck still present . (A Goodwin)

Sunday, 15 January 2017

Jan 15th

Due to today's bad weather there is no news either way to wether the Long-tailed Duck is still present or not.

Saturday, 14 January 2017

Is it or Isnt It

Below is a image of the Westport bird is it the same one or isn,t it. I know its different lighting conditions but the head and flanks on the Astbury bird today seems to be lighter , just look at the dusky flanks on the Westport bird pictured below. Well is it or isn,t it???
Westport Lake Long-tailed Duck taken end of December.

Long-Tailed Duck

The female Long-tailed Duck is still present on the Mere,and today was my first attempt at trying to see it and even more difficult trying to capture a record of it on camera . Its the first record for twenty one years so pretty special really and with work getting in the way as usual I was certainly ready. Thanks to John Spottiswood for keeping me updated throughout the week and even ten minutes before I left work at lunch time today. On arrival it took several minutes to locate the bird as it was continuously diving only staying on the surface for a matter of seconds , it was around 100mts out so only distant record shots were obtained. Also present was the three Little Grebe a female Goldeneye and a pair of Shoveler which are also very scarce a this site. Two Buzzards ten Siskin and a single Bullfinch were also noted. If the Duck stays the challenge is on for better images, iam never satisfied !!!!

Friday, 13 January 2017

Jan 13th

Long-tailed Duck still present today . (A Goodwin). Thanks to Andy Goodwin three more species have been added to the overall site list these include , Sanderling , Shag and Yellow-Legged Gull. If anybody has any old records of birds missing from our list please get in touch at astburywildlife@yahoo.co.uk

Thursday, 12 January 2017

Jan 12th

Long-tailed Duck still present this morning .

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Long-tailed Duck

A female Long-tailed Duck was found this morning by Andy Goodwin this is the first record for around 21 years ,it could be the bird that was at nearby Westport Lake throughout December and early January. The Bird was photographed at a distance at mid-day and was still present late afternoon . Also a pair of Shoveler which are also scarce on the mere.(M Atkinson)

Monday, 2 January 2017

Jan 2nd

Certainly better weather than yesterday's rain and cloud ,today was cold frosty and clear blue skies .A total of 28 species recorded on my walk around this morning the highlights being eight Siskin and the three ever present Little Grebe,s . Four Pochard two drake's and two female also eight Great Crested Grebe,s were also on the mere. Three Bullfinch and several Goldcrest were noted and a party of seven Long-tailed Tits . A couple of Redwing were feeding on the berries in the car park I have still not managed a decent image of them yet.