Category Archives: Little egrets

Egrets: I've seen a few, but then again, too few to mention

Arriving 15 minutes early for a lunch-date with Carolyn, I popped down to the old swimming baths car park at Parkgate. There were at least 15 little egrets hanging out by one of the pools in the marshes.

Little egrets
Some of the 15+ little egrets

And to think I only saw my first little egret in England in May this year.

Burton Point

An evening walk to Burton Point along the road through the firing range! I'd never been down there before, thinking it was a military no-go area. But there was a sign saying it was OK if I stuck to the track.

Not many warblers this evening, but lots and lots of little egrets. To think I never saw one in the UK until two years ago! I'm also pretty sure I briefly spotted a raven before it disappeared behind the headland.

Little egret
Little egret.

There were masses of bullrushes going to seed, and lots of yellow flag irises.

There was also a kestrel being mobbed by a single crow. If, indeed, it is possible to have a 'mob' of one!

Crown mobbing kestrel
A kestrel pursued by a mob of one.

A very enjoyable walk. I will return!

More photos | slideshow

Three new species

To Carolyn's for a quick walk around 'her' field. The cow parsley is out in force at the moment. It looks magnificent.

Last weekend, I finally took the trouble to look up the name of the plant with the characteristic leaves and brown stem which grows in abundance in the field behind the house (and in our lawn!). To my surprise, it turned out to be sorrel. So I searched some out in Carolyn's field and got her to try a couple of leaves. Bitter, but surprisingly refreshing. Apparently, farm-workers used to chew on sorrel leaves to slake their thirst when working in the fields.

Cow parsley
Cow parsley at Burton Marshes.

Then down to Burton Marshes for 20 minutes nature waiting. I hadn't been down there for years, and couldn't believe my luck: reed warblers, sedge warblers, and grasshopper warblers—three new species for me. I must have seen them there before as a child, but warblers are buggers to identify. Now, thanks to my digital camera and iPhone British birds app (which even plays the birds' songs for you—a great way to identify warblers), I was able to work out which little brown jobs were which. The grasshopper warbler's call was amazing: I kept wondering what the loud, grasshopper-like noise was, and then the penny dropped!

Sedge warbler
Sedge warbler.

I also saw whitethroats, little egrets (both firsts for me on the Wirral), and a kestrel put in an appearance.

Good things come to those who wait 20 minutes.

Slideshow of photos from this evening »