|A Spoonbill, wondering what the hell an Evening Chronicle seller is doing at Druridge...|
Its an education these days, visiting our birding hotspots in Northumberland.
At lunchtime I managed to pop out of the office and up to Druridge Pools for half an hour to see the Spoonbill that had arrived this morning. Unfortunately I missed a Common Crane, a Red rumped Swallow and a Red Kite that had all gone through, but, one Spoonbill in work time is better than nothing.
As I arrived and left the car, I could hear a bellowing, a bit like a Red Deer during the rut, as I wandered the road down to the Budge Screen. When I got there, there was no rutting stag, just a chap with a polite Tyneside accent who sounded like Brian Blessed rehearsing for Flash Gordon II . Loud? I cant imaging it could have gotten any louder, exacerbated by the acoustics of the sheet steel and iron framework of the hide. The Alnwick Town Cryer was put to shame here by a person birding, not at a football match!
Don't get me wrong as most will attest, I am not a shy, retiring, wall flower and have been guilty of having a laugh in the bay hides with mates, but this was on a different level. It would have easily drowned out an ipod gropper at full volume.
I was about to leave to get some headache pills when Jimmy Steel and Colin Bradshaw arrived. I stayed a little longer for a catch up, but could barely hear them so headed back to work...I'm not used to this, you'd never find it happening at Boulmer or Howick...
Still, out on the fields were the nice adult Spoonbill, a Little Egret, 3 or 4 Herons, 56+ Shoveler, many Teal, Wigeon and Snipe plus a few displaying Lapwing, all with heads up ready to flee in alarm at the racket going on in the tin box.