27 November 2005

Hawfinch and Bittern - Warwickshire wonderland

Possibly my finest ever self-found this morning - a Hawfinch at Draycote Reservoir. There had been reports of one in the country park during the week, but it was on the far side of the water that I found mine - well, to be fair it did fly down in front of my car! Nevertheless, I was able to watch it for a minute or so, drive down to grab a couple of birders fellow birders, and get back to find it again for more (albeit brief) views.

With Hawfinch sightings in Warwickshire being a rarity indeed (often just one or two a year) this was a fantastic find, but then when we left via the country park, we were able to spot a second bird, a beautiful male giving fantastic lingering views. A brilliant experience all round.

Normally that would be enough for any one day, but the double lure of breakfast and a reported Bittern at Brandon was enough to convince me to press on. Breakfast was fanastic, and then, after 20 minutes waiting in East Pool Hide, the Bittern moved, stalking left to right across a specially cut channel. Smashing. Then, from the far side of the water, I watched (and grabbed a record photo) while it adopted its camouflage position - head straight up in the air, totally still. Then it was off for a slow flight across the whole water before dropping down in Newlands.

What an amazing morning.


Old Buzzard said...

Congratulations on the Bittern - there were several people looking for it on Suday afternoon but I don't think anyone saw it.

Hornet said...

Thanks, it's always nice to get a clear view - but three times was a real thrill.

Hopefully it'll stick round for a while and give everyone a chance.