On Sunday set off for Big Waters for the normal 9.30 wander with Alan, Ian and Keith. The pond had risen a fair bit and both scrapes had no mud as far as we could see and the island was definitely lower in the water. Although prior to this a Common Sandpiper appeared on the island and then vanished without me seeing it fly in or out ore even walk round the island. I was probably too busy recording all the sightings in the book.
On my walk in early on I did see the Golden Rabbit which has been seen by a few of the Birders recently and it actually stopped still long enough to get a pic
Off on the walk and we had to stop and detour when Alan and then Keith heard a Goldcrest or possibly 2 calling whilst the 2 senior members of the company who couldn't hear a thing were told where it was and when it was calling and I realised what Mrs Blogger must have felt like when she couldn't hear the Grasshopper Warbler and I could and kept telling her where it was was etc etc and many more etcs. After a slow wander in what was becoming quite a warm morning we came across the first 2 of a probable 9 different Redstarts which we spotted during the walk in different combinations of sex and age. Whilst we were all standing searching a field a bird came from very low and flew right in front of us and behind us, it was my first sighting of a Cuckoo in Big Waters. Unfortunately we didn't see it again. We carried on the walk and on 3 more occasions we spotted Redstarts. It got a big quiet in a couple of places we normally see things but there had been a lot of footfall and cyclists through prior to our arrival so that was proably the reason. There was quite a few Butterflies out including a few Walls
Then came the highlight of the day, so far, for one member of our party when Keith (resident Anorak plane spotter) informed us that the BA plane approaching was the Olympic Flame one, so immediately out came the cameras and our Apprentice Anorak (not Ian or I) got off a couple of shots which he was mega happy with. My Pics were OKish but here is a borrowed one with the plane in all its glory.
Every time we walk round we stop at a certain place as Alan tells us it is the most obvious place for a Spotted Flycatcher and as usual there wasn't anything there but a 100m further down we looked back and Alan called Spotted Flycatcher and after retreating back a further 20m on the opposite side of the hedge sure enough one was seen along with a couple of Whitethroats and a further 2 Redstarts. We also had a morphing bird, which changed to a rabbit then a squirrel then back to a rabbit which is a bit more than the Chiffchaff in Fife got as it at least only had 2 legs in both variations (it was just so funny, I'm still laughing about it).
Another great walk, 2 Patch Lifers, and the best remark of the day from Ian after Alan informed us of a possible Redstart nearly 150m away in a hedge, lots of looking and eventually someone said it looks like a hole in the hedge so we moved to another angle to check it out although we were saying that if you move the hole would not be visible from another angle but as we were edging along Ian said "you won't see the hole from that angle cos its just flew away". Yes it was a Redstart, Alan does it again. Must of you know I'm just a beginner at this game compared to most and walk in the shadows of these guys and get the P*** taken out of me royally but what the hell, its great getting taught at 62 even though my full little brain doesn't retain a lot nowadays as others keep telling me. In a couple of months no doubt I will have to go and get another anorak fitted for my aeroplane watching as last week I actually emailed another nurd (probably Ians equivalent) in the aeroplane world describing a plane as that old fashioned RAF looking thing and within a couple of hours had an answer back. Must stop prattling on and get back to watching TV and talking to Carole.