A long drive and the longest walk I've done since I fell in the ditch! Must have been half a mile but the limp is now much less well pronounced. And the bird performed really well in a very strong wind. What bird? Well, that's the problem. Pied wheatear [really good tick] or black-eared wheatear [lifer!]
I'll have to wait for the expert DNA analysis. Here she is.
General views of the site and of the assembled crowd.
Day 2: report of ring-necked duck at Saltholme tempted me out again. Not much walking involved. But in heavy rain on the main lake the bird was a long way off but could be scoped from the Visitor Centre. I headed for Phil Stead hide. Very quiet apart from some blackwits. A lesser black-backed gull dropped in.
This godwit puzzled me. Very dark and in all the photos this white eye is apparent. Is the bird blind in one eye? I know birds have an eyelid that sometimes shows in photos but to show in every single photo seems too much of a coincidence.
I decided to go to the Mad Hatter's Tea Party again and see if I could get better shots of the juvenile black tern as it was still present. I was quite pleased with these.
Someone said a merlin had been seen a few times at Phil Stead so I headed back there. The merlin duly performed. Made my day!!
Day 3: just 45 minutes spent in a very crowded Phil Stead hide at Saltholme watching a curlew sandpiper with some blackwits.