|Male Sparrowhawk, Winthorpe|
And anyway, I've had a fair few thrills bird watching, you can be minding your own business in one half of Mere hide at Gibraltar Point - the noisy half, seeing as the GOM is usually whispering in mega-decibels - when you get a whispered shout from the quiet, studious, serious side to 'come and have a look at this.'
Well, what is a girl to do with an offer like that? Yes, I went. There were three men all wanting to show me their equipment. One had got a posh digital camera with various attachments, trained on an obliging dragonfly. It was truly amazing, I could see it breathing. I was then nice enough [I can be nice, just not very often] to act dim while they explained 'thorax' to me.
Back to the thrills of Gibraltar Point ... On one occasion we set off on our way around and couldn't help noticing an over-excited group of people [aged variously between 20-70], all wearing shades of green and khaki. They also sported the obligatory walking boots with thick socks over their trousers.
|Female Sparrowhawk, Gibraltar Point|
They were all carrying binoculars [as was I, plus my camera], half a dozen had spotter scopes set up on tripods and were looking intently at a tree in the middle distance. 'Oooh, must be something good if they're all this excited' methinks, so we asked ...
'It's a Yellowhammer!!!' - yeah, right ... So I have to ask myself 'am I getting blasé in my old age or what?' We'd seen three Yellowhammers a few days before and I don't remember walking around and waving my arms about like this lot - but I suppose they may well be repressed thrill-seekers. We saw lots more of them on our usual route [we do sometimes go on a different route if we need a bit more excitement]. We concluded that they must have been on a bus trip from a bird watching club or maybe just escapees from somewhere not very secure.
I remember one occasion last year that we went to test my lovely new gadget [again]. I took photos of damselflies, dragonflies and even managed to spot and take a few shots of a Whitethroat. Upon looking at the photos in situ, the GOM wasn't convinced.