Monday, October 6, 2008

My legs hurt

Spurred on by light south-easterly winds and an apparently new Barred Warbler in the Nordagerdi garden first thing, Mark & I put ourselves through a punishing Punkbirder-style dawn-dusk marathon in the field today. We walked miles around Toab, Scatness, Exnaboe and Sumburgh, but saw pretty much nothing apart from a Snow Bunting at Toab and a Brent Goose at Scatness.

Sunrise over Pool of Virkie - just to prove I really was out of bed

By mid afternoon, things were so bad that we were reduced to twitching this newly-arrived migrant Hedgehog at Sumburgh Farm, as it was a Shetland tick.

Not only could we not find anything ourselves, we couldn't even see birds found by the Nordagerdi crew, including their Barred Warbler and a Yellow-browed Warbler at Sumburgh Farm.

Highlight of the day was undoubtedly another tasty curry for tea (beef Madras this time), followed by several beers, including this fine specimen - the only Punk spotted on Shetland this year!

Incidentally, rumours of South Mainland Shetland being overrun by hordes of birders this autumn seem to be completely unfounded. Apart from the Nordagerdi lot, we only saw two other visiting birders today. Presumably the crowd at the Red-throated Pipit was due to it being a Saturday, with most of them just passing through on their way somewhere else.

Fans of Sparky the dog will be pleased to know that he's still going strong; pictured here with his good friend Ginger Cat, hogging the sofa as usual:

The forecast for tomorrow is more of the same, but with added rain. I can't wait.

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