Saturday, 10 November 2012

18th October

After yesterday's storm, today was set to be a sunny day and there were high hopes of something good being found from the west.  It didn't quite happen, and there seemed to be fewer birds around.  The 'Hume's Warbler' was still in the Dump Clump so I went back and spent many hours watching that.  Well I say watching it, most time was spent waiting for it to show, and when it did show, getting millisecond views of each pose as it was so active.  The photographers certainly had a field day with this bird and blasted off thousands of shots.  It's a pity that Canon cannot make the shutter release noise quieter as the noise of all the Canon fire is really too pervasive.  Having had a good look at this bird I can see very little to suggest it is anything other than a Yellow-browed Warbler.  The call is it's sole anomalous feature.  I've not studied any photos or read any discussion by others on this bird.  My feeling is that is is an inornatus that has originated from the zone of overlap that has perhaps imprinted its call on Hume's.  Birders always want birds to fulfil their pre-determined criteria.  The real world is not like that and there are always birds that don't fit with expectations.  Every bird is an individual.  This Spring whilst out Nightingale surveying, I heard a quite bizarre singing Willow Warbler which started off with a normal Willow Warbler song, but as it reached the crescendo turned into full-blown Chiffchaff song!  Unfortunately I didn't have the means to record the song, it would have been good to have made a recording. [This autumn I've been seeing birders recording calls onto i-phones - incredible how technology is impacting on field birding].
In the late afternoon, I moved on to a Red-breasted Flycatcher which showed well occasionally.  I felt I was struggling again to capture it.

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