The 9th was Radde's mission, with a bird reported at Tynemouth, myself and Emma headed out that way, only to find out that it was a Dusky Warbler as we promptly approached, so we fell back on a nearby Red-flanked Bluetail that failed to show itself before news came thru of a Radde's Warbler at Filey...so we headed South again...It was an elusive bird that I only managed brief views of, but enough to tell what I was looking at amongst the very numerous Goldcrests, Chiff-chaffs, Robins and Siskin which were literally falling out the sky that day!!
Two days later (11th) I was off again with Dan Pointon, Adrian Kettle and John Pegdon heading to the Outer Hebrides for one of the two Hermit Thrushes out there. Unfortunately there was no further sign of the South Uist bird but the Barra bird was still in situ. It took longer to get too and included another boat journey but it was well worth it. This bird showed beautifully after a short wait as the photo shows:
Due to the boat timetable we had to stay another day on the Hebs, not that that bothered us. And so the 12th (my birthday) had us searching the plantation near North Loch Eynort for the two Red-eyed Vireos. These were frustratingly elusive and after about 6 hours we found one!! I arrived home late that night in Cumbria completely shattered!!
October got even more hectic, and on the 15th I made the epic trip south from Penrith, via Sheffield for the Solitary Sandpiper at Black Hole Marsh, Devon which had taken up residency for about a week. This bird too showed at point blank range and was unmissable:
The day ended watching the Glossy Ibis down the road at Budleigh Salterton which showed well but distantly.
At the end of the month I made my first trip home of the term, where I was hopefully going to connect with the Hampshire Red-flanked Bluetail that unfortunately didnt hang around long enough. But there was however; an American Bittern found at Zennor, Cornwall. This obviously took priority!! I travelled over night on the 29th to see the bird on its first twitchable morning. Unfortunately we unwittingly managed to flush the bird from cover shortly after first light as we tried to get a view of the pool there. The bird was only seen on two more occasions that day before relocating to Walmsley Sanctuary where it performed much better!!