4 March 2020

· Wirral ·

A couple of hours in the car, pretending to work while mostly gazing out across the Dee Marshes at Gayton.

The marshes were unusually quiet today. No harriers, no egrets, no geese. Then, just as I was about to head off to Dad’s, I spotted a skein of about twenty pink-footed geese heading in from farther out in the estuary. They followed the course of the Dee, far over on the Welsh side of the marshes, for about a mile, then began to descend.

Suddenly, more pink-footed geese rose from the marsh to join them. Lots and lots more. They swept back and forth, low above the river. At this great distance, they looked more like smoke than large birds. Through my binoculars, I tried to estimate their numbers. My best guess was at least 1,000 birds.

It turned out the marshes weren’t so quiet after all.

Richard Carter is a writer and photo­grapher living in Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire.WebsiteFacebookTwitterNewsletterBooks
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