Salford Bird News May 2015

Photo: Buzzard aka The Salford Eagle on Moss Farm, Chat Moss

The Salford Spring got into full swing with lots of birds and birders on our two big birding sites – the Salford Mosses and the Salford Docklands

Much respect to the Lancashire Wildlife Trust who are working hard to build something special up on The Moss


The new Little Woolden Moss Lancashire Wildlife Trust Reserve was announced onto the birding scene when a Stone Curlew made the national rare bird headlines and there were 2 Salford sightings of Skuas, sea-birds that are on the move along the coast in Spring, but do also move overland from the west to east coast, but usually at the Solway Firth! A fine Spring experience is the sight of Goosanders with tiny chicks on the River Irwell


The month got off to a flying start on May 1st with a male Whinchat, 2 Yellow Wagtail, 9 Wheatear and 2 Swift on Little Woolden Moss with Corn Bunting, 8 Yellowhammer, 2 Grey Partridge, Wheatear and 5 Tree Sparrow on Cadishead Moss

May 11th was a big day with Stone Curlew, Raven, 2 Wheatear, Corn Bunting, Hobby, Peregrine, 17 Dunlin and 2 Grey Partridge on Little Woolden Moss and a Garden Warbler Cadishead Moss

Little Woolden Moss has begun to attract wading birds and other great sightings were 15 Ringed Plovers on 12th and a Whimbrel on 23rd

Also on the Mosses, 2 Wheatear and White Wagtail on 12th, a Cuckoo on Little Woolden Moss on 17th and a Quail reported on Chat Moss at Moss Side Farm on 21st

Raptors gave some stunning views with sightings of Peregrines, Hobby and big numbers of Buzzards aka The Salford Eagle

Note: The owners of Moss Farm on Cutnook Lane are actively encouraging birders to park at Moss Farm to go birding up on the Mosses, but generally request that people use the cafe/the farm shop during their visit – there is plenty parking and the cafe is open until 3pm, to reach the LWT Reserve walk north for 200 yards then turn left along Twelve Yards Road and then carry walking along the road for about a mile until you reach the Little Woolden Moss LWT Reserve


Common Sandpiper and Reed Bunting were noted on 1st and a pair of Blackcaps were seen at the Lowry Mall during the BTO Breeding Bird Survey on 2nd

2 singing Sedge Warblers were the highlight of the International Dawn Chorus Day at Pomona on 4th

On 6th an adult Pomarine Skua, a first for the site, circled the docklands and flew north-west along the Manchester Ship Canal, and a Common Tern was also present adding to the Costa del Salford scene!

The launch of the Salford Docklands Project on Saturday 30th May saw 30 birders onboard the 4th Birdwatching Cruise, the highlights were The Big Five and the Peregrines giving some superb views

There were huge numbers of Swifts and hirundines around the docklands and peak counts of 36 Mute Swan, 6 Goosander, 1 Goldeneye, 1 Tufted Duck and 3 Great Crested Grebe


On 13th May 2 broods of Goosander were spotted on the River Irwell – a female with 8 chicks and a female with 2 chicks, also 8 Buzzards were counted in the Irwell Valley

Also an experienced birdwatcher got a glimpse of a Skua, thought to be a pale-phase Arctic Skua, flying south along the River Irwell on 30th


At Boothstown, 2 Cuckoos on 13th, also 2 Yellowhammers, 3 Reed Buntings and good numbers of warblers, and at the Worsley Lagoons, Hobby on 12th and up to 12 Reed Warblers and 2 Sedge Warblers

At Blackleach Country Park, Tree Pipit, Garden Warbler and Lesser Whitethroat

Drake Mandarin and 4 Tree Sparrows at Glaze Bridge on Jennets Lane, 2 Reed Warbler and 3 Water Rail at Jack Lane Nature Reserve, Flixton

A pair of Blackcaps at Buile Hill Park and at Winton Park, Great Spotted Woodpecker, 20 Swift, Treecreeper and 50 Starlings

A Peregrine on Coconut Grove on 16th flew towards the University of Salford


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