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Night Heron - Halton

Posted by P Crooks 
Night Heron - Halton
July 25, 2020 08:59AM
Yesterday evening Jon Carter was sent a picture of an adult Night Heron in a dead tree by the River Lune near Halton Weir. It had apparently been present for several weeks. I had a walk along the south side of the river from Halton Mill to about c.500 metres upriver from Halton Weir this morning, but was unable to find the bird. It could of course be roosting out of sight in one of the trees overhanging the river bank somewhere nearby.

The only birds of note were a female Goosander and a Kingfisher.

Pete C
Re: Night Heron - Halton
July 25, 2020 10:10AM
Hi All

Just walked the full length of the wood upstream of the ECO Housing in both directions. Not able to locate the actual roost tree. There are very few Alders in that wood. Over 90% either Sycamore or Oak. Most of the Alders are at the water's edge but from the photo it doesn't appear to be a waterside tree.

Having previously dipped on this species twice in the UK I am probably not the best person to find it. In my experience, abroad, they either stand out like a sore thumb or melt into the canopy. It appears to be an adult which makes it somewhat easier to locate than a spotty juv.

Maybe get a better view of the trees looking across from the South side of the river. There is also a survey team present in a dingy and in the woods at the moment they look to be measuring bank erosion. Although I think a day time sleeping Night Heron won't be bothered by them if it is still around. Very interesting where it has originated from. Not aware of a big influx this year or could it be an escapee...

Just blown up the image and it does appear to be close to the water's edge with the river beyond. I suspect from the angle the shot was taken from it was close to the eastern end of the wood where it starts to climb back up onto Low Road. I did spot an Alder in that location which was partly dead and appeared to have a lot of dead Ivy growing around it. That might well have been the tree seen in hindsight.

If so, it is approx. 150m W from the now missing metal gate on Low Road.

Re: Night Heron - Halton
July 25, 2020 11:22AM
I've just had a look at a map of Halton and realised that there are two weirs! The weir I was referring to in my previous post is actually called Forge Weir and is the one to the east of Halton Mill. There is another weir further downriver that is called Halton Weir. Jon's posting on the WhatsApp group mentioned Halton Weir, so I may have been searching along the wrong section of the river!

Pete C
Re: Night Heron - Halton
July 25, 2020 04:30PM
According to the post by the original observer on the Halton FB page, the bird was indeed at Forge Weir - on the opposite side of the river to the Halton Lune Hydro Scheme. I may have a wander down there this evening.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 25/07/2020 04:31PM by Kevin D.
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