Andy Mackay and I had been talking on Friday, when he was finding Redstart all over Burrough Hill that there had to be a Wryneck on site given the Easterly winds and the other migrants. I had said that Neil Hagley and I had been talking about finding a Wryneck. My favoured site would have been Cossington Meadows. No sooner had we finished our call than Andy twittered out news a Wryneck had been found at Great Glen.
The bird was never seen again so I didn’t feel too bad. Wryneck can be very elusive. This morning as I breakfasted with Leigh at Inn The Park, St James’s Park, London my mobile alerted me to the news. Wryneck again at Great Glen. Shit, shit, oh shit! I wouldn’t be getting home until 15.00 at best. Would it stay? Lots of goodwill messages, showing well, still there. Blah, blah, fucking blah.
Back home, I was changed and on my way out at 14.55 when Dave Gray rang. Marsh Harrier over Swan Meadow at Cosso… fuck, fuck, fuckety, fuck! A record breaking dash to Cosso and a few calls to Dave finally got me onto the Harrier as it gained height and moved off. Species 143 for the Soar Valley Year list and a Cosso tick, yes.
Another rapid drive to Great Glen, I met up with Nigel Spencer and together we headed off down the farm track. I had also spoken to the finder (both days). We were soon enjoying great views of this cracking County rarity and a steady stream of people popped by. I was able to get some shots as it fed happily down to 20ft. I can’t believe the bird remained on show for almost 2 hours – unthinkable.