Tuesday, 17 September 2013

A Wryneck at Stonyhills

2nd September 2013

On Saturday 31st August 2013 Barry Reed found a Wryneck at an old land-fill site between Stonyhills and Stapleford. I called in on my way home from Mark's, without binoculars and camera of course, but even then did manage to see it deep inside a small Hawthorn just 10 yards away.

The site is a very attractive habitat consisting of extensive wild grassland with a number of Hawthorn saplings. Unfortunately it is very difficult to access as all the approach roads are single track with very few passing places, and parking is limited to a maximum of five cars on a bend in the road. I therefore decided to skip the Sunday, which was likely to be busy, and went up on Monday morning.

Once on site I joined the gang of celebrities including Lee Evans, Joan Thompson, Ron Cousins, Jeff Bailey and Ernie Leahy who were scouring the area without success. Then we heard a shout from Ron who had found it lurking in a bush. Over the next 20 minutes we all had good views but, from a photographic perspective, it was mostly distant or deep inside cover.

After a while most of the throng departed leaving only myself, Ernie and the newly arrived Simon West and eventually the bird appeared on the outside of a bush allowing a better shot to be taken.

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