Seems anybody who is anybody is either blogging about seeing a stupid white headed gull or linking to the Punkbirder article on why you shouldn't bother going to look at the stupid white headed gull. I will be doing the latter. Now let's say no more about it.
Instead I spent this morning catching up on some odd jobs I've been putting off for ages, like reworking the photo gallery on a website I maintain for my choir. This is because I would rather sit indoors all morning drinking tea and repeatedly hitting 'ctrl+c' 'ctrl+v' than spend the ungodly hours of dawn standing next to a rubbish tip in a freezing wind. But we're saying no more about that.
This afternoon my utter sloth was rewarded with an excited call from Parus, who'd found a flock of Waxwings in Sainsbury's car park 10 minutes walk from me. I grabbed the camera and rushed down there but all to no avail, that ten minutes was long enough for them to scarper without a trace.
So I'm still a member of the #notseenawaxwingclub club, but I'm getting closer. And as I've said before, if you're going to dip do it five minutes from home. That way you just get the crushing disappointment of not seeing the bird, rather than the crushing disappointment of not seeing the bird AND the frustration of having needlessly wasted a tenner's worth of petrol on a round tip trip to wherever AND the keening despair of having to drive all the way back home through the mass of weekend drivers in Rainham whichever location you've driven to. It's not like they're a first for Britain or anything.
On the other hand, if I hadn't gone to Hornchurch, and if I hadn't been forced to mooch about in the local area looking for the disappeared Waxwing flock, I'd have missed out on this amazing natural encounter round the back of the Queen's theatre. I wonder if it will breed successfully given the high volume of pedestrian traffic and the utter lack of brine shrimp?
I shall monitor its progress with interest in the name of ornithology. Maybe I could get a grant?