Sunday, 19 October 2014

Yellow Browed Warbler at Amwell

Last day of the holiday. Since Wednesday I have been working in the garden, so more back elbow and knee problems, had a flu jab with the usual reaction and Sunday would have been the only day for a trip out. As there was not a great deal happening, we decided not to bother and I needed the rest anyway. So I decided on a nice gentle unwinding at Amwell in the lovely warm autumn sunshine.
I got there fairly early for me, and met Barry, Trevor, Tony and the rest basically taking it easy. There had not been a great deal from the view point, but Barry and I noticed a gull fly off which looked a bit different to me. Barry had it in the scope and called it a 2w Caspian Gull-getting more frequent here now. Strangely I have not managed to pick up Yellow Legged Gull this year.
There were the usual passage of larks, pipits and distant thrushes but not long after Bill, Paul, Phil and John Bartlett arrived Barry decided to head off on his usual circuit and Phill went down to the Gladwyn hide. After a long moth convention Bill  suddenly perked up and was off-Barry had found a Yellow Browed Warbler at the south end. As we all made our way down to the bottom we could see Phil and the dogs running. Luckily Bill and Trevor knew the way and we eventually arrived to find Barry by some sallows.
The bird initially was very elusive, staying quite low and towards the back of the bushes, and views were very frustrating. After about ten minutes it started to show a bit better and I managed to get a few decent images, though often obscured by the foliage. It largely remained in the sallow so we all got very good views but it decided to fly out. I saw it briefly land in a bare hawthorn-would have been fantastic views had I been closer and then it flew into a very leafy alder, calling several times.
Rather happy but tired I made my way back with most of the others, "admiring" the new dragonfly pools and scrape-bomb crater and cock up is a better description.  Encountered Jay, Graham White Mike Illet and a few others rushing down.
Back at the viewpoint it was still a bit quiet, though the Stonechats put in an appearance.

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