I took the plunge today and drove the 100 miles to the Willow Tree Fen in Lincolnshire in the hope that the sun would shine and the bird would show. On arrival I parked in the small car park having set the sat nav to postcode PE11 3JH . At 7am I was sitting on the track watching the reed bed on the opposite side of the track.
The mud and flat grass area gave a good clue we were waiting in the right area and within half an hour I spotted the bird feeding on the grass opposite us and quickly got the small gathering on it. The bird flew back into the reeds and didn’t come back out for about forty minutes by which time we had been joined by another fifty or so birders.
This was the pattern of the morning with the bird popping out for a minute or so each hour but when it did come out it really did perform well often coming too close for my 400 lens to hit within the focal length. By the time I left the gathering had risen to over a hundred all enjoying crippling views and with most being well behaved although I have to add most being far too loud!
Meal worms had been put out before I arrived and a couple of birders added to the food bank causing some discussion among those present but nothing too heated. The guy offering to play a tape was shot down though and thankfully the bird didn’t have to deal with that as well as a hundred people watching it feed.
Locally I found my first Whooper Swan of the year and five Barn Owls. On the way home I found a single Goshawk and Woodlark in the Brecks.
The Bluethroat is only the second British Winter record so what are you waiting for…get up the road and see the little star.
Year list now 151