|Me and TV's Nick Baker. Sort of...|
Nonetheless, it hasn't been all bad as I spent the weekend down at Rutland working at the Birdfair.
This was my first visit to the event since I last went in the mid/late 90s (the exact year escapes me...) and it was quite a privilege to attend as part of the RSPB team.
I didn't get to see too much of the fair as I spent the majority of my time on the RSPB stand handing out free checklists (we gave out over 9,000 of them over 3 days!), selling raffle tickets (£15,000 trip to Antarctica for 2 as the first prize), and signing up new members to the society.
And on the plus side, I had red kite drifting over the campsite I was staying on two days in succession.
In my absence, Aldcliffe regular and finder of spoonbills and yellowlegs, Pete Crooks posted the following on the LDBWS site on August 19th:
"The flooded field at the end of Aldcliffe Hall Lane proved to be very productive following the morning rain - 1 juv. Ruff, 5 Green Sandpiper, 4 juv. Little Ringed Plover, 9 Snipe, 1 Whimbrel and c.80 Goldfinch"
I did manage a brief check on the following day but it was pretty birdless by comparison. A single pair of juv. little ringer plover were on the Flood, a single mobile and noisy greenshank was flying around and 3 golden plover were flushed off the marsh along with a large flock of lapwing when an adult peregrine came blasting through accompanying a younger bird carrying prey.