About Graham Clarkson

Born & brought up in Marshside, I started birding there in the mid 1970s & made my first birding trip to Martin Mere in 1977. I've lived, worked & birdied in Abu Dhabi, Northern Ireland & Gloucestershire & I've spent time working in Kazakhstan & Madagascar. I enjoy birding my various West Lancashire patches, making frequent birding visits throughout the north-west of England and North Wales. I stray elsewhere in the UK & enjoy birding abroad from time to time. I'm particularly interested in wildfowl (especially pink-footed geese) with an interest in waders & raptors, bird counts & surveys & conservation. I'm trying to get the hang of photography & digiscoping - I'll get there eventually.

My degree from Edge Hill University is in conservation biology. I've guided on numerous birding days out & trips & guided birding holidays to Lesvos, Andalucia, Extremedura, Majorca, Camargue, Hungary, Finland & Florida. I enjoy showing people birds & habitats & helping them learn more about birds & enjoy birding. I'm currently involved with the Birdwatching and Beyond course at Edge Hill and a brand new venture; Skein Birding.

As well as birding I'm interested in captive breeding & reintroduction projects & zoos, how they're managed & how they contribute to conservation. I'm a proud Lancastrian & love the Lancashire countryside & landscapes. I'm an Evertonian & also keep up with what's happening at Southport, PNE & Bristol Rovers. Gardening, dogs (I have a Labrador & a Tibetan Terrier) and keeping chickens (especially Marsh Daisys & Scots Dumpy Bantams). Ruth & I have two marvellous boys who both love nature too. I hope you find the blog and subjects covered interesting; please feel free to leave a comment.

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Halsall Whoopers

Today's dinnertime peregrinations took me to Halsall Moss where I happened upon a splendid herd of whooper swans on a flood surrounded by unharvested wheat fields. I initially thought 400, or maybe 500 hundred birds so I set about counting them. My first count 860, so I checked again and got 863 and again, 863. As the swans were behaving I counted the juveniles, 48 in total with seven broods of one; eleven broods of two; four broods of three; one brood of four and one brood of five. A single ruff was with c.450 lapwings in the same flood. Great to talk to Mr Pilkington who has farmed in Halsall (initially with his father) since 1933 and lived on the same road as me in Marshside for many years. Mr Pilkington likes whooper swans and only scares them off growing crops. A nice man, the swans are lucky.
As I made my way home I drove to the back of Martin Mere and at an elevated spot counted the whooper swans there; 67 in total with two broods of two and two breeds of three. A single tundra bean goose was present with a large flock of pink-feet near to Doehyles. I wish dinnertimes and autumn days were be longer....

Halsall whoopers
Big, long line of whoopers

No comments:

Post a Comment