But, as previously reported, with brunch beckoning I forced myself to drive past the Long Itch diner and on to Brandon Marsh, conscious that the long-staying stonechats were still being reported. One Full English later and I was in the new Ted Jury hide, looking at not one but two neat little 'chats - a female and a male, the latter with fairly muted head colouring rather than the striking black I'm more used to seeing in spring. A first winter male perhaps?
Both were extremely obliging, hopping from bush top to reed stem to post to tree stump, only occasionally dropping from view.
With a sprinkling of wildfowl on the East Marsh hide, plus a kestrel, a buzzard and some regular visitors to the Brandon feeders I was able to conclude a day with a creditable 47 species.
Bird of the day: Stonechat (Saxicola torquata); much as I loved the little 'mipits' at Napton, the stonechat has to be the bird of the day. A regular but scarce find for most inland birders, it's a distinctive and attractive bird with the commendable habit of sitting at the top of bushes and vegetation (unlike some birds I could mention - yes, cettis warbler, I'm looking at you).