Sunday, October 10, 2004

Wryneck - brightening up a dull day!

Returning from Scilly last night, both Katie’s and my euphoria of successfully twitching the Cream-coloured Courser was slightly tempered by news that we had missed a Wryneck on our home turf (found by Martin Coates's dog Sparky). Ouch! Still, we had Mr Creamy Courser under our belts, and Katie had also ticked Short-toed Lark, so life was pretty sweet.

For some time, Brian 'the natural' Stone, Katie and I had arranged some time ago to head out to the coast for a rare day out of area. Our plans were changed slightly in order to start at Langtoft for the Wryneck. With a clearing sky I wasn't too hopeful, but as we left Katie's, Mikey 'world of nature' Weedon called us to say he was watching 'the neck'. top man!

We arrived at the site and from the car we were able to get brief views of the Wryneck only feet in front of Mikey's digiscoping set-up. We quietly got out of the car out of view of the bird, but the bird was spooked and flew into a tree. Some 45 mins later it hadn't returned, so the three of us headed for the Lincs coast as planned.

The Lincs coast is a vastly underwatched area - and for good reason. With Yorkshire (White's thrush, OBP, Pallas's and Yellow-browed Warblers, RB Fly etc) and Norfolk/Suffolk (more Pallas's and yellow-broweds, RB Flies etc) dripping with birds, our anticipation and expectations were greatly heightened. But without good reason. Skeggie to Gib Point was dead! Goldcrests (and not that many) a couple of Chiffies (which I didn’t even see!), a Lesser Whitethroat (which I only heard) and star bird - a Woodcock (seen only by Katie and Brian!) - and that was it.

So, with no birds to look at I suggested heading back inland for another, and better, look at the Wryneck. Agreed. An hour or so later we were back at Langtoft and, driving through the gate we immediately spotted the Wryneck feeding along the kerbstones in front of us! Bloody marvellous! We spent the next hour or so getting closer, and closer, snapping and snapping. What a bloody wonderful creature. I'd seen Wrynecks well in the past, but nothing quite like this! (see Katie's photos).

For Katie's pics click here. For Brian's pics click here.

What a star!

Playing hide and seek

What you lookin' at?

Get in there!

Tongue action

Photos © Steve Dudley
Nikon Coolpix 995 | Leica APO Televid 77 with 20xWA eyepiece

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