Friday, 26 June 2015


Weather: E/NE-2, warm and muggy, occasional showers.

With an overnight NE and some pre-dawn rain observers were hopeful of something good today. With Bee eaters reported throughout the UK and most locally on the Orme; that was the hoped for species. 

Returning waders were immediately evident with 11 Redshank feeding in the gutter below the sea defence. 12 returning Black headed Gulls were to be found  roosting on the sand just off Dove Point . 

Many young birds could be found in every bush with Whitethroat and Reed Warbler being the most notable.

The day was punctuated at approximately 11.30 when the hoped for rare was located; A cracking male Serin was found at 'Hoopoe Hollow'  sitting on a fence line with a Greenfinch and a Linnet. No sooner had the bird been located and identified, it took flight. Observers resolutely kept it in their sights until it eventually alighted atop a small, very distant tree. A few record shots were taken before the bird dropped into a distant weedy paddock and lost to view.  

This is an exceptionally rare bird on Wirral and only our second ever. The last record was another male; singing in gardens next to the Lighthouse on the 9th April 1991!

The bird was not seen over the next couple of hours although there are many finches feeding amongst the weedy paddocks so is likely to still be present.


Male Serin - AMC

Male Serin -AMC


Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Tuesday 23rd June 2015

Weather; Fine and sunny. Very light north-easterly breeze.

As always at this time of year birding becomes much quieter in the lighthouse area. The spring migration is over and many summer visitors are now feeding newly fledged youngsters which have already left the nests. At least one pair of Willow Warblers and a pair of Whitethroats are feeding newly fledged and free flying young near the pond. Many other Whitethroats, Sedge and Reed Warblers are also carrying food in this area. 

Newly fledged Whitethroat. Note the gape line still evident.  EW
The field in front of the lighthouse is currently carpeted with Marsh and Pyramid Orchids, together with other wild flowers and grasses, The sunny day encouraged increased butterfly activity today, with many Large Skippers in particular being evident in the grassy areas.
Large Skipper (male) EW

Observers AMC, EW

Thursday, 11 June 2015

11 June 2015

Weather: E-2, sunny and warm.

The usual summer sea birds remain offshore whilst only a 2 Oystercatcher remain on the shore. With an easterly overnight wind a few 'odd' birds were on the move today. A late Spotted Flycatcher moved through mid morning whilst two Mute Swans made an ungainly landing on the outer shore.A small flock of 3 Siskin were picked up as they passed overhead. With bird highlights limited observers attention was drawn by some Lighthouse botanical interest; namely the Star of Bethlehem and a small colony of Bee Orchids.


Bee Orchid (AMC)

Star of Bethlehem (AMC)

Saturday, 6 June 2015

6 June 2015

Weather: SW-5/6, sunny spells

With migration slowing to a trickle at the Lighthouse attention turned to the sea today. Offshore an Arctic Skua, 7 Gannets, 1 Kittiwake and 2 Common Tern were off the Sea defence at the Lighthouse today.

Two late Swallow and a House Martin passed through mid afternoon battling their way North across Liverpool Bay.

Some time was spent photographing a pair of Common Tern which were fishing in the Lighthouse gutter today. This enabled an easy comparison  to be made of under wing patterns between Common Tern and  recently photographed Arctic Terns. (see photographs below)


Common Tern (AMC) with the distinctive under wing pattern

Arctic Tern (AMC) taken on Unst . Compare under wing pattern with Common Tern above