One of the delights of patch birding is watching the way the natural world unfolds, and pointing your efforts in the right place to get the most of what is going on around you, and ultimately the birds. On this patch, the birds that I am able to see are often dictated by the tidal flow of the Thames as the exposed foreshore means that birds are more likely to be about. I don't often consult tide tables, but work out what today will be like at a certain time based on the tidal situation yesterday. When I went out yesterday, I reckoned that I had a good chance of a little foreshore and the possibility of something interesting turning up (even if it was more Black-headed Gulls than the day before). I arrived at the river, and I was right - just a little left before the incoming tide covered it all (there is a five metre height difference here between high and low tide generally).
Just as I got to the area I was planning to hang about in a ruddy great barge sounded it's horn. Not just a little horn, this is loud enough for the whole of SW London to hear. A little bit of overkill to remind a pleasure boat to get the fuck out of the way. This alarmed most of the birds in the area (and probably killed a couple of pensioners through shock) and many left. Immediately after this a low flying Chinook flew down the river, which would have shaken the teeth out of the remaining live pensioners and sent the remaining birds on the river off to the wetland centre.
Thank you very bloody much. I had to entertain myself with the mundane again. 'Oh look, that Greenfinch is on a wall, not a tree! I wonder when the last time I saw a Greenfinch on a wall was?' FFS.
The most interesting thing that happened was this blackbird. He has been on the blog before, and yesterday he was giving me evils.
A Blackbird doing semi-albinism