Saturday 5th March.
A morning round Uttoxeter Quarry first. Where there was 44 Goosander, 11 Pochard, 31 Wigeon, 19 Teal and a Willow Tit. Brookleys Lake was very quiet, with 4 Mandarin and 4 Great Crested Grebes of note.
Whilst getting a spot of lunch in Morrisons I bumped into Andy. We were both thinking of nipping over to Blithfield later to pay homage to the roosting Great White Egret. But as he had a bike to pick up at the bike shop in Uttoxeter first, I was picked up a bit later.
Just another quick check of the quarry beforehand. Which now revealed 41 Curlew and a Gadwall. We were then joined by that lover of knitted jumpers, Stevie Fair Isle. And as we were leaving him to it, my mobile phone rang. That's odd I thought, it's Steve. What's he got? "I've got the Dipper in the River Tean!".
Now, the last time a Dipper was seen round here was back in October, while I was on the Scillies, and there's been no sign since then. With a personal patch tick at stake, I had to run! That's right reader, this racing snake figure went into full flow! Seb Coe eat your heart out! And this is why:
They always look rather dapper, like they're dressed up in a dinner jacket. Always a pleasure to see.
With the Dipper in the bag, and Andy's bike picked up, over to Tad Bay. A small crowd were gathering along Newton Hurst Lane. The Egret must've had it's watch on, because it came in to roost at exactly 6pm, in the descending gloom. Actually it was nearly pitch dark, as the following picture will suggest:
This wasn't what the internet was made for, a picture like this is a waste of the blogosphere. But it really is the Great White Egret. Not a white plastic bag, or something from the Sky at Night!