Well, this weekend has been nothing short of a p*sser.
Yesterday (all my troubles did not seem so far away, more's the pity) as some poor decision making had me looking for gulls at Newburn and not getting 'Pommed' into oblivion on the coast. And to make matters worse, I cocked the tides up and so the Board Inn mudflats were covered in water, and the gulls were on the south bank on the building site and out of sight. Still, a nice stroll in the sun around the place netted about 20 species (at this point the sea watchers had not posted and so I was blissfully unaware).
Dropped in at Arcot to try and locate a Redpoll or two, and true to form, dipped.
So, like failing on the last part of Bullseye, I logged on to BirdGuides and looked at what I could have won!
And today, Whitburn Obs. at 7:45 and until 9:30, not a lot. The highlight was a northbound Little Gull. And then another text from SH re. Pallas's at St. Mary's and off north.
From 10:10 to 11:30, glimpses for most, and needless to say, nothing for me. It was getting a bit frustrating, to say the least. Home, chores and back for 3:10 and within minutes more snatches for some of the crowd.
And then the dilemma, dear Reader, as a small, green bird dropped from the top of a tree into another, lower bush, and a declaration that it was, indeed, the PW. And between then and 16:30, the briefest of views, sometimes accompanied by a call, and sometimes not. And the question - Do I count this?
Well, my conscience would not be clear, so despite having seen it, I have not classed the odd frame or two as anything.
The Mealy Redpoll in the NW corner of the willows, on the other hand, was close and lingering and without doubt a tick.
NB - 09:30/19/10/10 - I note that the Mealy is now recorded as a Lesser. I did think it looked a bit too buff in parts, but the 'Great and the Good' (and there were many of them) called Mealy so I was happy to accept their judgement. Lesson No. 1 - don't be afraid to question.