Today I've been down to the University of Salford for an interview. Once I'd finished I had a few hours before my train departed for Penrith, so I wandered off campus and along the River Irwell. The first thing to catch my eye as I headed down was a Kingfisher darting along the bank side ! Something I hadn't expected in pretty much inner city Manchester. Little Grebe, Tufted Duck, Mallard, Moorhen, Canada Geese, and Black Headed Gulls were all on the first bend.
The majority of the stretch I covered had flood defences either side, with large housing estates not far from the water. Adding Chiff Chaff Grey Wagtail, Stock Dove and a few Grey Squirrels I soon began moving out of the man made landscape and into a little wild corner, an area labeled on the map as the 'Irwell Sculpture Trail', it had the vibe of Plessey Woods. Another Kingfisher made it self known, along with a single Grey Heron, but as I made my way round the corner the most unexpected sighting of the day occurred, first the call, then a brief glimpse flying by, a Green Sandpiper ! Using the bank as covered I managed to creep along and watch it feeding along the shoreline.
Its amazing what urban areas can hide.