The neighbours came to visit today, or a neighbour anyway. Sultan Paul al Whitemanijad from the neighbouring state of Walthamstan decided to sign up for Woodpecker Tours, and so at 5:45am he and I found ourselves walking across a misty Flats towards one of the copses. I decided to try the Esso Copse first, and sure enough as we approached some drumming was going on. A quick pause to ascertain the pitch and duration, and I decided we were game on. A fine male in the bag within five minutes.
A quick tour around found no Wheatears whatsoever, and the best bird was a Common Snipe in the usual spot, that is to say the boggy bit of the SSSI. Woodpecker Tours will be ongoing for at least another two weeks, priced at the very reasonable cost of £180 per person per half hour, with a 10% discount if no birds are found. Or at this rate, for free if you find me a Wheatear.