MONDAY 21 SEPTEMBER
Well it was a very excited Steve Blake on the phone mid morning after he had just witnessed the first-ever GLOSSY IBIS to be recorded in the county since 1887 ! The bird had flown several circuits of Tyttenhanger GP Main Pit in an attempt to land on the spit but its efforts were scuppered as its archaic profile frightened the roosting gull flock and it was consequently chased away to the NW by two persistent individuals. It never did land and local patchworker Steve was in the unenviable position of being the only observer to witness this colossal event. One could argue that with over 37 juvenile Glossy Ibises touring Britain at the moment, it was perhaps inevitable that one would finally overflow Hertfordshire airspace.
Anyhow, along with Steve, I spent the next several hours trying to intercept it and perhaps second-guess where it may have landed. Sadly, both of us failed in our quests. Steve took the option of continuing to scour the Tyttenhanger complex and neighbouring gravel pits, ditches and fields whilst I drove out to Tring Reservoirs and environs, where conditions offer the best feeding prospects for a tired and hungry vagrant ibis.
Weather today saw a change in wind direction - from northeasterly to westerly - but temperatures remained high and skies were predominantly clear.
Little Grebes (11)
Great Crested Grebe (family party of 5 birds)
Mute Swan (family party of 6 birds)
GADWALL (4 pairs)
POCHARD (1 female)
Coot (high count of 126 birds)
Black-headed Gull (6)
Red Kite (7)
COMMON KINGFISHER (1)