Tuesday, 25 December 2018

Monday 24th December

With news that a Dusky Warbler had been seen in Kingsbury Water Park there was only going to be one destination I would be visiting today. The bird which is a first for Warwickshire was found yesterday by Rambling Walker (twitter moniker) and reported to Steve Haynes.

I met up with Steve and Graham Mant and we made our way through the partially flooded paths to where the bird had been seen adjacent to the M42 motorway. On arrival the traffic noise was deafening, making picking up the bird calling rather difficult, unless it was close. On arrival we joined several other local birders some of whom had been there since first light.

The bird had shown briefly earlier in the day but only the original finder had seen it. The others though had seen a couple of Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers and there were double figures of Chiffchaff feeding in the Willows along the river.

After a couple of hours the sun started to sink, as did the temperatures, and the intrepid group had shrunk somewhat. At about 2.20pm the Rambling Walker beckoned us, he had been watching the bird for about ten minutes but he hadn't been able to attract anyones attention as we were around the river bend out of sight.

We quickly made our way to where he was standing and sure enough the bird was calling. It was making its way quickly along the reed bed calling as it went. At this point we were looking into the sun, so we instinctively made our way to the end of the reed bed for a better view and eventually got flight views of the bird as it flew from the reed bed into the Willows. At one point it actually gave a burst of song, certainly something that I have never heard before.

It then reverted to being very elusive and it was a further 30 minutes before it was heard briefly again.  The whole area looks good but there is an awful lot of cover there and its hard to work, more importantly I don’t think the bird will get any easier to see. One thing is for sure I know where Joy and I will be going this year for our Christmas Walk – Merry Christmas Everyone.

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