It’s the time of the year when I have better things to be doing than writing this and undoubtedly most of you have better things to be doing than reading what I write. Actually that’s true all year. So I’ll leave you with a quick mystery perhaps you can answer. You’ve heard of manky mallards, well today I came across a mere (glacial pond/lake) in Ellesmere, Shropshire, that was full of manky greylags. All kinds of weird domestic geese mixing with hybrids (certainly seemed to be some Swan Goose in them). And there was also this, along with some birds that looked like they could be crosses between this and a domestic/greylag.
I think it’s a Snow Goose. It is a possibility in Britain, and can be a much more common escape here too. It certainly seemed smaller than the Greylags and Canadian Geese around.
The Mere at Ellesmere is actually quite a nice spot, full of Tufted Ducks, Great Cormorants, Great Crested Grebes and Little Dabchicks. The surrounding wetlands on the Shropshire/Cheshire/Wales borders also held Eurasian Wigeon, Shelducks, Northern Shovellers and Common Teal.