9 Oct 2014

Day 1 Shetland 2014 Zoothera!!!!!

With news of a Whites Thrush showing well on mainland Shetland breaking Monday night I had this sinking feeling that once again we'd timed our trip to miss one of my bogey birds. The fact if was still there Tuesday and we weren't flying until Wednesday made it even more frustrating!

Picking Al Orton up at 04.15 and then Mark P 30 minutes later we were at the airport with plenty of time to spare. Just as well really as Mark had forgotten his photo I.D and had to rush home in a taxi! He made the flight but his bag didn't make it until late that night.

With an hours transfer time at Aberdeen we heard the Whites Thrush was still there! Now we were even closer......

What a great bird and one I'd dreamed of seeing for years! 

Meeting Chris Griffin we drove the short journey to Grutness where a Myrtle Warbler had been relocated after being found by Roger Riddington in his garden a couple of days previously and promptly disappearing. Like buses - us waited years to see one and then see two in the same year! 

After having fantastic views of this American waif we spent the time birding around the Sumburgh area so as to be close to the airport if Marks bag turned up. It eventually showed up later and was brought by taxi to our apartment. Once the light got a bit better we went back to the White's Thrush site where a grand total of 6 of us watched this superb bird in full sunlight.

More excitement later when we received a phone to say a possible Lanceolated Warbler had been found near Garth Ness. We all needed that one so drove the few miles to the location only to find no one there. For some mysterious reason the finder had left the scene so with Roger Riddington & Ken Shaw leading the search we spread out and waded through the burn and iris beds. All to no avail although we did find the first of many Yellow-Browed Warblers.

After an early start and a long day in the field we grabbed some beer and food from the supermarket and drove up to our annual retreat at the The Decca.

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