Water End/Nettleden Rd: Having recently remarked on the lack of passage Whinchats, it felt quite surreal to find 4 of them in a corn field, just north of Hemel, this morning. Add to that a Wheatear, 2 Yellow Wagtails, a well marked Lesser Whitethroat, more than a dozen Swallows, a couple of Yellowhammers and a sprinkling of Linnets, Meadow Pipits, Goldfinches, Starlings and Pied Wagtails, all without moving an inch, and you’ve got a mighty decent spot to plant your scope. The Lesser Whitethroat was a nice surprise and I was just about to check it wasn’t anything more interesting when a couple of walkers arrived, curious as to what I was doing. Of course, by the time I got back to the bird, it was nowhere to be seen.
|Yellow Wagtail, horse paddock, Nettleden Rd|
|3 of the 4 Whinchats in the corn field adjacent to the horse paddock on Nettleden Rd|
All this was on the back of seeing my first Hertfordshire Wryneck yesterday evening, in Wheathampstead. Wrynecks are extraordinary looking birds, a member of the woodpecker family, but I have yet to get a really good view of one. Still, I did manage a record shot this time, which is an improvement on the Ivinghoe bird I saw a couple of years ago.
|Wryneck, Wheathampstead, skulking in the bushes!|