Monday 12 July 2010


Having missed the Rainham White -tailed plover ( work what a pain ) i was more than a little relieved when news broke on Friday 9th of it re appearing at Slimbridge , i had already planned to go for the long staying Gull-billed tern near Exeter on the Saturday 10th so the wheels were put in motion to try for both , i picked up Kevin Mc in Surrey on route and we were soon heading of on along journey  to try a bag these two difficult birds , Kevin had already seen the white-tailed at Rainham so was quite relaxed about it .

We stopped at the services on the M4 near junction 18 for a quick toilet stop and the news on the pager well shall we say was not that encouraging , basically the white tailed had not been seen by at 8.50am and there was no news on the Gull-billed , i suggested we carry on and go straight to the Gull-billed site as i felt pretty confident that it would still be about and Kevin agreed , so of we set , any how we had gone about 20 miles down the M5 when the pager sounded off and the news was positive the white tailed had been re found at Slimbridge , GREAT, a quick change in direction and with in an hour we were on site looking at this stunning White-tailed plover , this was a British tick for me , i had seen them in Israel back in 1989 , but even so i was pretty relived to see it , i have some photos to post in my next post .

We stayed for about an hour getting reasonable views then we decided we should head off for the Gull-billed , the journey there was horrendous , there had been a multi vehicle accident on route and we were stuck in traffic for a good hour ( seemed like 5 hours )  well eventually we arrived at Exton railway and were soon trying to locate this tricky tern , i was scanning through my scope and caught sight of a tern which was quite distant and then dipped out of view before anyone else could get on it , i did nt get enough on it to be sure which was a little frustrating to be honest , anyhow about 5 to 10 minutes later Kevin and another birder located the Gull-Billed Tern and i was soon adding it to my British list , it was quite stocky in appearance black bill and legs , the tail was only ever so lightly forked and i am pretty sure it was i saw earlier , most of the time it was quite distant but eventually it came a fraction closer and settled on the mud flats near some cormorants we watched for about 45 mins, it was just abit to far for a photo , other birds of any real note were a few  Black-tailed godwits is nice summer plumage we also had 1 Red Kite and up to Common Buzzards on route .

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