4th November

A day we foolishly wrote off having seen the weather forecast the previous evening started slowly in the obs with the staff contemplating their various caffeine based drinks rather than the days birding, however a call about a Caspian Gull in the Culverwell flock finally kicked off the day.  The next surprise came from the woefully neglected garden as a Long-eared Owl was flushed out during the opening net round, it was then re-sighted going between the garden and the huts for much of the morning. The day was not over, however, as a Richard's Pipit first seen heading south over the patio and watched as it headed out to sea was an excellent highlight for the observers gathered in the doorway (this occurred just prior to a rather tremendous rain shower). The final bit of excitement came from a seeming mass hallucination culminating in a slightly disappointing twitch of a Willow Warbler (see pictures below). Other birds sighted on a slightly peculiar day included two Yellow-browed Warblers in Culverwell, four Firecrests around the Obs and a total of 6900 Woodpigeons heading south.

This morning's Caspian Gull © Martin Cade:

We had an entertaining little interlude during the morning when we received news of a Dusky or Radde's Warbler at Osprey Quay. On arrival a quick look at the observer's photos led to a far too hasty call of it being an obvious Dusky and when it duly appeared that identification was further accepted and everyone blazed away with cameras etc etc:

After a while Grahame Walbridge offered an opinion that one or two things didn't seem right and, to cut a long story short, the realisation hit that we'd had been completely fooled by an out of context Willow Warbler! Later, in bright sunshine as opposed to rain and heavy shadow you were left wondering quite how such a scenario could possibly have arisen! © Martin Cade: