Not sure if that's quite the right title but we'll come to that a little later on...
First jaunt [22nd August] to Fairburn to see some curlew sandpipers that by the time I arrived had decamped to St. Aidan's. A couple of cattle egrets were - you guessed - with the cattle.
With a little imagination you can just make out the yellow bill of the right hand cattle egret.
August 24th: Next trip to Blackhall Rocks just north of Hartlepool. A red-backed shrike was hiding somewhere north of the car park. A long but eventually fruitful walk. Stonechats en route.
Crowden and Black Tor: I parked and, after chatting to two birders who went racing ahead of me, I set off slowly. I feared a hard uphill walk so I was going to take it very steadily.
A pheasant seemed happy to let me walk past. It knew where I was going, I think.
After some time the two birders caught me up. 'It's a case of the tortoise and the hare,' one of them said. 'We went charging off in the wrong direction!' So I'm the tortoise. Well the tortoise got there!
My first ever view of the lammergeier is the one I'll always remember. Not a great bird photo but a splendid view. A vulture standing proud over his [albeit temporary] domain.
Here's some more shots.
Kestrel in the distance
September 2nd: Kilnsea / Spurn. I began at Canal Scrape car park simply because the pager flashed up 'Wryneck showing well' or words to that effect. It was, eventually. It must have gone into the long grass just before I arrived.
A very shy wood sandpiper at Canal Scrape
After that a quick march down to the Warren for a barred warbler. Normally I've spent a long time waiting for one of these to appear from the depths of the undergrowth. This bird was just there. Instantly.
I blame the flies!
Kilnsea Wetlands next. Ringed plover [little, I think] and dunlins.
Final year tick that day was my first wheatear of the year at Sammy's Point. Just shows what a strange year it is. No photo as I just went to have a quick look with my bins. I went back with the camera but couldn't relocate the bird.
September 4th: a full circuit and a half of North Cave looking for Egyptian geese. No sign. Gary Dayes said there were 2,000 greylags on the reserve plus a pinkfoot. I never found an Egyptian goose but remarkably I did spot the pinkfoot. It trails one wing but can fly from lake to lake. Gary said it was on the Reedbed Lake. I found it later on Cell A.