We left our hero stumbling around Wanstead, emotionally and physically stunned. What a difference two days of standing about in the cold make. First the pain at Rainham where a nice volunteer helper showed me a Caspian Gull through his scope. Yay! What an absolute disappointment, doubt I'll be able to spot another just yet. So I bought the "Gulls of Europe... ", which if all else fails will be a handy tool in case of insomnia. The afternoon picked up when a Lapland Bunting called from one of the field margins - couldn't find it though. Pushed up my patch list to remain stubbornly in a distant second place. Today thankfully it was not so cold and I got the sense early that something good was going to happen. It didn't for a long time, and then only after a visit to the little tea shop of happiness. Failing to find the Rail for the fifth consecutive visit in a row (it seams likely it has been Incorporated into a Heron!) I edged down the south side of Perch. Over the other side I could see a cigar shaped object swimming out from trees down the edge of the ice. Cue expletive(s). A beautiful red head, the first I've seen on the patch, ever. Woo-hoo! Phoned Jono to get him to come down, but he was in Essex. Texted Tim and Stuart. Stu was in Datchet, and I presume Tim still in bed. Luckily as I raced round to take the fine illustrations below I met up with Steve and Kathy who had been doing the RSPB garden thingy down by the Dell. Both were immensely chuffed to see the bird, as was their charge, and anyone else who happened along. Time for a pic and a new paragraph.
What a stunner, [waddya mean you can hardly see it!] thinking of sending that one in to Birdguides for their photo of the week competition, or perhaps this one....
... OK the last one looks like those faked shots of the Loch Ness monster. Maybe this one
... or perhaps I should just keep them to myself, but that would be selfish. Anyhoo after watching the aforementioned red head for about an hour, we lost it! So after another cuppa Steve joined me in a fruitless search of the old sewage works. That was until we flushed a Yellowhammer from behind us (no pictures I am afraid). A good day all in all and a pretty sunset. Ha! women, who needs em?