Monday, 3 May 2010

Iberian Chiffchaff. Again.

Given that the girls and I had seen the Iberian Chiffchaff on Friday, Muffin felt left out. Despite being only six, he is getting interested in the concept of listing, and, put simply, he didn't want the girls to have seen something he hadn't. Poor kid. So we had to go again, which was no bad thing. I am a proper birder, not one of these tick and run types, so an opportunity for further study was welcomed. Yesterday evening I even went as far as reading the BWP entry for Chiffchaff, some fairly indigestible reading, and although the book was printed before ibericus was invented, it contained quite a bit of information on what was then the sub-species brehmii. I'll quit before this post becomes just too interesting to bear, but suffice it to say that I was fairly intrigued and didn't mind going back one little bit. With the camera, naturally.

After some irritating early morning tyre trouble, we picked up Paul en-route, and were soon at the site. The bird did not disappoint - it seems to favour a small oak to the left of the path, and returned there fairly frequently. When we realised this, rather than hunt for it in the canopy, we shot the breeze and waited. Muffin was very particularly adept at spotting it when it did pop out, mostly before me it pains me to say. My poor fading eyesight....

We set up both the camera and the scope, and had rather fantastic views. In addition to singing, it also called this time. I'm not sure I'll remember it, but it was clearly something different. The song is very distinctive though, so when one turns up in Wanstead I'll have no trouble. And of course, Wanstead being the rarity hotspot that it is, it's a matter of when, not if.

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