I don't usually twitch these days especially on my own but when I got back from work at 2 30 today there were no messages on my phones so I thought I would ring the humble birdline to see if there were still any Firecrests kicking about locally. I only had a couple of hours as I had to get back at teatime to pick the kids up.
Eastern Crowned Warbler in Durham...I didn't listen to the rest of the messages. Its a long time since I have seen a picture of Eastern Crowned Warbler I had to get the books out to remind myself. Despite it being the busiest time of the day and week I decided to drive down. I stuffed a fiver in my pocket and bought a Twirl en route to get some change for the Tyne tunnel but well within the hour I was watching this gem of a bird. I was fortunate as the bird was showing well on my arrival favouring the less foliated tops of the Sycamores.
I'll leave pictures and plumage details to the experts and visit other excellent blogs and sites; I deliberately left my camera at home for this very reason! Had it been a first for Britain like the charismatic Double crested Cormorant on Teeside (which incidentally cost me a fortune as I locked the keys in my car that day) I would have been a bit reluctant to make the journey but phylloscs are star birds...worth travelling miles for.