I've been lucky enough to see some great birds this last week:
Okay, maybe putting that last one has aroused some suspicions, I've actually been nowhere more exciting than Gloucestershire. Not to knock it though, I had a great uni fieldtrip up to Slimbridge WWT (School of Applied Sciences paid our entry ticket, Get In!!) last Friday and had a good look around the place, having not visited since my early birding years way back.
I must admit that I actually really enjoyed looking at the captive stuff, seeing some stunning birds, some I've seen in the wild. some I've dipped, and some that I hope to see in the future. The Eider flock were particularly popular with our group, and the coach journey home was punctuated with impressions of the male's display call, some significantly more realistic than others.
I did of course take some time to look through the wild birds too, and was happy to see this thing, the first i've seen in the UK since 2 on Tresco in 1999, I seem to remember the boat from St. Marys for these detouring to twitch a newly discovered Surf Scoter between Tresco and St. Martins (eurgh, reminicising about Scilly more than a decade ago, i'm starting to turn into one you old farts, i'll be wearing Country Innovation and listening to P.I.L next!):
Bewick's Swans are always a delight
Male Pintail - Surely one of the best birds we get in the UK
Even the wild stuff comes close here, too close to focus sometimes.
And yet more wildfowl, this time the subject of my dissertation, nearly all of my 'birding' time this year has been spent watching Brents down in Poole Harbour. and time well spent it's been too, they're really quite endearing birds when you stop to watch them for a while.
And i'm back on Blakeney Point in 5 weeks, YEEEEHAAAAA!