SD7807 : Adult and Juvenile Coots, Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal

taken 2 years ago, near to Radcliffe, Bury, Great Britain

Adult and Juvenile Coots, Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal
Adult and Juvenile Coots, Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal
Coots are medium-sized water birds that are members of the Rallidae (rail) family. They are close relatives of SD7807 : Moorhen (Gallinula chloropus). Coots, and are often seen swimming in open water such as here at the winding hole on the Manchester Bolton and Bury Canal at Radcliffe. Adults have predominantly black plumage and, in contrast to the moorhen, have a white bill and frontal face shield. The young chicks have orange-tipped plumes which make them very distinctive (and conspicuous to would-be predators such as foxes). The orange plumage usually begins to fade after about a week.

This photograph shows an adult coot with two chicks which are approximately 2 weeks old; the orange tips to their plumage have now almost disappeared but their bright orange beaks and lack of the white face shield means that they still look different to the parent. The brood originally consisted of 7 chicks but these two are all that remain following an attack by a stoat (or possibly a mink) a few days earlier.
LinkExternal link RSPB
LinkExternal link Wikipedia
Manchester, Bolton & Bury Canal :: SD7506

The Manchester Bolton & Bury Canal is a disused canal, built to link Bolton and Bury with Manchester. The canal, when fully completed in 1796, was 15 miles long. It was connected with the River Irwell in Salford, in 1808.

From Salford the canal ran up the Irwell valley to reach Nob End, where it climbed the Prestolee Locks, and then split into two branches leading to Bolton and Bury. The canal was built principally to serve the many collieries in the area, as well as to transport other cargo such as stone and timber.

By 1846 a parallel railway had been built to Bury, and the canal went into decline. The Bolton arm went out of use in 1924, though with some minor use until 1947. The Bury arm was breached just above Nob End in 1936, but the then isolated Bury arm continued to be used until 1951, principally between the canalside Ladyshore Colliery and Bury. The final section of the canal was officially closed in 1961, and much of it was filled in.

LinkExternal link Exploring Greater Manchester, a fieldwork guide (web edition); edited by Paul Hindle, Manchester Geographical Society
LinkExternal link Wikipedia article
LinkExternal link Manchester Bolton & Bury Canal Society website
LinkExternal link Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal, Pennine Waterways

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SD7807, 891 images   (more nearby search)
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Date Taken
Tuesday, 5 May, 2020   (more nearby)
Tuesday, 12 May, 2020
Geographical Context
Canals  Suburb, Urban fringe  Wild Animals, Plants and Mushrooms 
Canal (from Tags)
Manchester Bolton and Bury 
Image Buckets ?
Close Up 
Camera (from Tags)
Panasonic DC-G9 
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SD 783 075 [100m precision]
WGS84: 53:33.8304N 2:19.7457W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SD 783 075
View Direction
West-northwest (about 292 degrees)
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Other Tags
Canal  MBBC  Water Bird  Aquatic Bird  Coots  Rail  Fulica Atra  Juvenile  Chick 

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