This morning we tried for the reported singing Bluethroat along the East Bank at Cley. In our haste I forgot that I was wearing shorts and ‘boy’ did I pay the price during our two and a half hour vigil! There was a noticeable sea fret when we arrived at Walsey Hills and a stiffish breeze was blowing from the north as we walked along the bank. Apparently the bird had been showing five minutes before we arrived, so we were feeling lucky. An hour and a half later, not a peep from the bird and I was getting decidedly chilled. Jane had opted for an ill-timed walk back to the visitors centre for a comfort break when first the Ruddy Shelduck, which has been frequenting these parts for a couple of weeks, put in an appearance quickly followed by the Bluethroat – which sang briefly from a distant elder bush. Jane was, by this time, ambling back down the bank but alas the bird had disappeared into thick cover by the time she reached me! We gave it another hour but again there was no sign. The afternoon was spent in the garden until the Bluethroat was again reported. Twenty minutes later and this time success – a UK ‘lifer’ for Jane.
The picture is a poor record shot, due to distance, heat haze and the setting sun, but it is just about recognisable as a Bluethroat, of the Central and Southern European White- spotted race: