When my good friend John Hunt suggested earlier in the week we should go up to East Leake and try for the Bee-eaters on Thursday I readily agreed particularly as they would be a Lifer for me.
We set off at 9.30 AM in weather that could not be worse if you tried.It was one of those days when the cloud was almost at ground level and there was a constant light drizzle that managed to to soak your clothes,your bins,your specs and worse of all your camera.It was also pretty cold.Had we time slipped forward to November.
John very wisely ignored my directions to the RSPB car park and relied on his satnav. My advice based on Google Earth was only 3 miles out.Directions to the viewing area were very good but the first 200 m required you to walk along a narrow grass verge on a very busy and wet main road.The wind from one very large lorry spun me round 360 degrees.
There were about 80 birders at the viewing point all wrapped up against the weather.Even I a fair weather birder forgot about the poor conditions because we spotted 3 Bee-eaters on an Ash tree about 120 m away. A Lifer ! ! !
Here a very heavily shot of two of the birds in the Ash Tree.
After about 20 minutes all three flew off.
After about 40 minutes patient wait they flew back. We counted 6 in total. I'm sure that some of these heavily cropped shots taken with a wet camera show with bees that they caught.
Managed a pretty poor flight shot as they flew off again .This bird has also caught a bee I think.
On the way back we popped over to Earlswood lakes where John Oates had found 5 drake Scoters on the Engine pool.They were asleep in the middle of the pool so here as well the birds would not come close.