One of the ponds, surrounded by scrub
Got an e-mail via Peterbirder from George Walthew this afternoon:
Serpentine BP lunchtime
Pied Flycatcher - 1st winter
Whitethroat - 1
Gaaaahhhh! Pied Fly has turned out to be impossible to twitch this year (and every other year, I suspect). A prompt visit to Serpentine was required and WeedWorld and I made our way there as soon as we could.
We'd never visited the site before, and a mouthwatering array of habitat awaited us. There is a lot of scrub, open, rough grassland and reed- and tree-fringed ponds of varying sizes. It's like Coney Meadow on a grand scale, and really looks like it should pull in migrants... Oh, hang on, it already has!
[This is the other end of Serpentine from where I had the Wheatear last week]
A thorough search of the best-looking areas yielded precisely no Pied Flycatchers, but we did stumble across a Grasshopper Warbler, a Spotted Flycatcher, a couple of Blackcaps, a handful of Chiffchaffs and a large flock of Blue/Great/Long-tailed Tits.
The Gropper is a pretty late record, I think [locally], and it's always nice to find Spot Fly. In fact, it's nice to attempt to twitch something and actually have some other birds to see...
Bring on the Wheatears and Ring Ouzels!