Header Graphic
 St Helens
Rarity Photos
 Night Heron
Night Heron
Carr Mill Dam
 22nd May 2016
© Derek Williams
female Black Redstart
Black Redstart
Brookfield St
Earlestown, NLW
17th February 2015
     Little Egret
Little Egret
Carr Mill Dam
© Derek Williams 

Ring-necked Duck
Ring-necked Duck
Newton Lake
7th April 2014

Ring-necked Duck
Ring-necked Duck
Newton Lake
7th April 2014

Ring necked duck
Ring-necked Duck
Newton Lake
7th April 2014

© Steve Bond

American Black Tern
Black Tern 

Eccleston Mere

© Colin Davies

Adult Summer Med Gull
Med Gull
 Newton Lake, NLW 
Arctic Tern
Arctic Tern

Eccleston Mere

© Paul Brady


male Pied Flycatcher 
Pied Flycatcher
aylor Park
© Damian Pendlebury
Andover Road
Bittern at Carr Mill 
Carr Mill Dam
© Dennis Eagling 
Bittern at Carr Mill 
Carr Mill Dam
© Dennis Eagling 
Bittern at Carr Mill 
Carr Mill Dam
© Dennis Eagling 

Juv Arctic Tern
Juv Arctic Tern

Eccleston Mere


Napier Close
Town Centre

© Paul Brady

Ring Ouzel 
  Ring Ouzel

Billinge Hill

Go to the
Photo Galleries 
  to see more photos



  Thanks to Colin Davies for use of data from the Birds of St Helens 2000 report and the St Helens Wildlife Group 2006 Report
Other data is taken from the archive records of this web site and my own personal records

 Geese and Ducks

Home Page                                                                         Species List

page still to be completed

Taiga Bean Goose (Anser fabalis) 
Very scarce, Two seen on 07/02/1996 Catchdale Moss (JMS) in fields by Green Lane, possibly of the race rossicus (Tundra) and may have been present since 3/1/1996, was also seen on 11/2/1996 by ME.

White-fronted Goose (Anser albifrons)
Scarce, winter records, few reports from Rainford Mosslands, Old Coach Road / Dairy Farm Road junction, generally seen with Pink-footed Geese, latest report is of one seen with 800+ Pink-footed Geese at Old Coach Road / Dairy Farm Road junction on 23rd Feb 2013.

Pink-footed Goose (Anser brachyrhynchus) - Photo
Common, winter records - Regular sightings at Old Coach Rd / Dairy Farm Rd can be over 5000+  geese present, also skeins of geese can be seen flying around from the East Lancs A580 near to Knowsley also flyovers have been seen at Eccleston Mere, Haydock and Newton le Willows.
Canada Goose (Branta canadensis)
Common, breeds, present all year - Can be found on most waters around St Helens, with regular build up of flocks at Eccleston Mere and Taylor Park.
Barnacle Goose (Branta leucopsis) - Photo
Common, winter records - Most records of previous years relate to a feral flock going around the north-west, however there has been very few sightings received
recently. Other birds reported from Eccleston Mere,
Old Coach Road and Carr Mill Dam also a single present in January 2010 at Linkway Retail Park Ponds.
 Brent Goose (B.bernicla
 Greylag Goose (Anser anser)
 Scace, recorded throughout the year - Most sightings are of single birds with Eccleston Mere and Taylor Park being the most popular sites.
Bar-headed Goose(Anser indicus)   
Scace, escapee, often seen with Greylags and Canada Geese, one seen 21/04/1986 Sutton Mill Dam (C&JG) was one of the free-flying birds from collection at Sherdley Park, was then present intermittently at Eccleston Mere over the next few years. No recent sightings received since last sighting 17/07/1999.
Ross's Goose (Anser rossii)
Rare, first record is a bird that stayed for just one day on 31st July 1996 (CD) with a flock of Canada Geese, only other record is a single from 11th to 19th October 2008 at Old Coach Road, Rainford with the big flocks of Pink-footed Geese there.

 Snow Goose (Anser caerulescens)  
Occasional escapes join the local feral Greylags and Canada Geese, a probable wild bird 1st winter was seen on 23/08/1998 at Eccleston Mere (CD).

Greater Canada Goose (Branta canadensis)
Common, breeds in quite a few area's, numbers build up in autumn & winter time around Eccleston Mere and Carr Mill Dam and around the Rainford Mosslands.
 Cackling Goose (Branta canadensis minima) - Photo 
Rare, one present at Eccleston Mere and then Carr Mill Dam in August and September 2011 and presumed to be escapee.
Red-breasted Goose (Branta ruficollis) 
Rare, records from Colin Davies 2006 St Helens Bird Report show one present 3 years running mainly at Prescot Reservoir or Knowsley Safari Park. possibly the last record is on October 2010 (WSA) at Old Coach Road / Dairy Farm Road junction.

Egyptian Goose (Alopochen aegyptiacus)
Rare, single bird on 16th January 2016 at Eccleston Mere, also a report from Colin Davies 2006 St Helens Bird Report shows one present 11th November 2006. The latest report is of a flyover going over Billinge Hill on 15th April 2017.

 Ruddy Shelduck (Tadorna ferruginea) 
 Rare, one record of two birds flying over Prescot Reservoirs on 16th October (BH).
 Shelduck (Tadorna tadorna) - Photo
 Common, breeds in small numbers, seen on and off thoughout the year in small numbers from Newton Lake to the Rainford Mosslands.
 Mandarin (Aix galericulata) - Photo
 Scarce, known to have bred in the borough in previous years, seems numbers have declined a bit after a peaked in the last couple of years.
Wigeon (Anas penelope)  
Scarce, recorded most years in small numbers, main sites being Carr Mill Dam, Eccleston Mere, Prescot Reservoir, a male was seen on Newton Lake, NLW on 21st November 2013 with the latest sighting is of 5 males and a female at Eccleston Mere on 16th February 2017.

Pintail (Anas acuta) - Photo 
Rare, usually singularly and less than annually on the larger lakes in St. Helens although there is 3 reports of a single at Newton Lake on 9th November 2008 followed by 7th and 9th January 2006 followed by a long staying eclipse male present from 9th July 2015 and still being reported on 11th September 2015

Garganey (Anas querquedula)   
Scace passage migrant, a pair was present at Prescot Reservoirs on 24th May 1990 next sighting is 13th September 1995 with the next sighting of a male on the 23rd May 2009 again at Prescot Reservoirs followed by a pair present for a few days at Carr Mill Dam in April 2016.

Shoveler (Anas clypeata) - Photo  
Common, regular sightings from received from Eccleston Mere, Penkford Flask and Newton Lake plus a couple of other sites although sightings have dropped off the last few years.
Red-crested Pochard (N.rufina) - Photo        
Scarce, male & female 13th December 2009 at Prescot Reservoirs and a recent sighting of a male at Eccleston Mere 10th Feb 2017 present for about a week.
 Pochard (Aythya ferina)  
 Scace, mainly wintering duck found on most of the bigger waters however numbers dropped from previous years to single figures at most recorded sites.
 Ring-necked Duck (Aythya collaris) - Photo 
 Rare, a first for the borough was was a male that was present for one day 7th April 2014  at Newton Lake (PL).
 Ferruginous Duck (Aythya nyroca)   
 Rare, only two records for St Helens, first a male on 3rd October 1981 (JMS) followed by a female on 15th July 1982 (AJS) both at Eccleston Mere.
 Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)   
Common winter visitor, numbers seem to increase early spring, known to have bred at a couple of sites, found on most of the bigger stretches of waters.  
 Scaup(Aythya marila) - Photo 
Rare, as recently as 14th March 2017 a male was present at Eccleston Mere, the first for the borough.
 Gadwall (Anas strepera) - Photo  
 Common on most waters in small numbers, present almost all year round with suspected breeding in small numbers on some of the quieter waters.
Teal (Anas crecca) Photo 
Common, regular winter visitor on most waters, there has been odd single ones have been seen during the summer months, numbers have dropped off over the last couple of years from Newton Lake which used to be over the 100 counted.
 Mallard (A.platyrhynchos) Photo 
 Very Common, One of the commonest and most widespread species in the borough, it is likely to be encountered almost anywhere.
 Ruddy Duck (Oxyura jamaicensis)   
Rare, no records for the last ten years or so, prior to that all sightings that were reported was in single figures.
 White-headed Duck - EN (O.leucocephala)
 Suspect any records to be escapees.
 Eider Duck (S.mollissima)  
 Very Rare.

Long-tailed Duck (C.hyemalis)  
Rare winter visitor, early records are of 3 on the 15th November 1983 (AM). A female present last week of November 1988 (DO) at Carr Mill Dam + another 22nd November 1998 (LBR) at Prescot Reservoirs. Latest is a single reported throughout November / December 2011 at the non accesible Prescot Reservoirs.

Common Scoter (M.nigra) - Photo 
Scace, more likely to be seen on migration, most records are from March and early autum sightings. Four records in 2006 followed by 4 flyovers at Eccleston Mere on 15th May 2014 (CD) followed by a single 26th March 2008. Latest records are 19th March 2015 (PL) & 26th June 2016 (WSA) both at Carr Mill Dam.
 Goldeneye (B.clangula)  
 Wood Duck (A.sponsa) 
 Rare, one seen 5th October 2016. Seen late afternoon on the McDonalds Pond by the St Helens Linkway, been present since sunday. Expect its a escapee.
 Canvasback (Aythya valisineria)  
 Redhead (A.americana)  






 CA -  Antrobus, C  WWA - Ashby, WW    RB - Banks, R  PA  - Barton, P   SC - Cully, S  PL - Peter Loydall
 CAD - Darbyshire, CA  CD -  Davies, C  JE - Ellis, J  ME - Ellis, M  DAF - Fairhurst, DA  TF - Ferguson, T
 KF - Foster, K  DG - Gaunt, D  C&JG - Gould, C&J  EH - Hardy, E  BH - Harrison, B  RH - Hesketh, R
 AJ - Jones, A  GL - Langley, G  AM - Middlehurst, FA  DO - Owen, D  KR - Rigby, K  IS - Spence, I
 JMS - Spottiswood, JM  CMS - Spottiswood, CM   AJS - Spottiswood, AJ  NT - Tasker, N  JMT - Taylor, JM  JT - Taylor, J
 UO - Unknown Observer  CW - Waring, C  RW - Waring, R  GW - Williams, G   CJW - Wormwell, CJ   LBR - Lancashire bird report

 NWBR - North West Bird Report 

 LTNC - Lancashire Trust for Nature Conservation

 WSA - Web Site Archives 



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