I spent half an hour on the North bank of Startops hoping for some wader passage but there wasn't any, just a Common Sandpiper in the Bucks section and a female Red-crested Pochard.
I moved onto the hills where the easterly wind was extremely strong, having seen a few Wheatear on Ivinghoe Beacon I was then delighted to find a stunning male WHINCHAT, feeding on the ground. I moved to try and get a piccy but the bird was flushed by a corvid, so I sat waiting for it to come out of the bush it had gone in ( Well I thought it had ). After 10 minutes I decided it wasn't there and moved 3 metres to my left where a RING OUZEL ( female ) came out of the bush right next to me !! Both birds were in the same area when I left over an hour later. They are favouring the area of bushes well East of the trig point on the Beacon, in the open sheep field and just East of the vehicular track that runs up the ridge. The Whinchat can be very elusive at times, but it is the most stunning bird I've found this spring !! (Mike Wallen)