Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Back in the London sunshine

A week of typically blustery Irish weather, with hail, sleat and snow regularly thrown, meant that it was a nice relief to be back in big city life with the sun shining. Inevitably, as is usually the case, the birding was slow. Saturday's visit to Thames Barrier Park produced little of note while similarly the river and woodland in Rotherhithe were typically quiet. Not even a gull ring to write home about.

On Sunday, it was time to revisit the Little Bunting at Walthamstow Marshes which I'd only seen in horrific conditions when it first turned up. I met the man of the moment, Dante S, on site where it had already shown nicely. There was a seeded tray now, put out by local birders, to entice it a little bit closer... which nearly worked. However, I was more than happy with prolonged views of it in its favoured bush as it sunned itself in the early spring-like weather.
Little Bunting Walthamstow Wetlands, London 18th February 2018
Walthamstow Wetlands seems to be the new place for Joe Public to spend their time. A place where all types from society congregate and inadvertently annoy you. The amount of times people were either walking past, totally oblivious of their fever pitched noise levels or inanely asking what we were looking at, did detract from the experience. And I credit Paul W, Jamie P, David B et al for persevering with this site now in its current form. And so I took solace, as always, in some nearby gulls at Eagle Pond where Dante and I managed three Black-headed Gull metal rings (Sweden and two British) and another annoyingly incomplete one from Finland...
Swedish ringed Black-headed Gull Snaresbrook, London 18th February 2018 - ringed as a 1st-summer 598 miles to the northeast at Pildammsparken, Malmö, Skåne on 3rd June 2009
As always bring on next weekend and fingers crossed for the start of some cold continental weather.

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