Twice-spooked, the flock of Black-tailed godwit rose into the air and came down closer and closer to the sea-hide. But now cloud had masked the sun and colour drained away.
The wood to the north is a dark reflection in the water with birds flood-lit and the sun highlighting the brick-red head and chest of those in breeding plumage. A shimmer of upside-down reflections surrounds the birds.
Fresh and salt-water mingle in the pool. To the west, a network of channels threads through grassy salt-marsh and out into Morecambe Bay. The hydrology of the wetlands is intricate and carefully monitored to meet the needs of birds, especially in the breeding season. We see a pair of distant avocet and last year we glimpsed their eggs on a shoal out in the water. A sudden rise in water-levels could flood them out.