Western yellow wagtail (Motacilla flava)

It’s so easy to be distracted, especially when it’s 30 degrees Celsius in the shade, and you’re flagging after a long-winded drive to a reserve (today RSPB Ouse Washes at Welches Dam near Manea in Cambridgeshire). There seemed to be a reed bunting every 30 metres in the reeds along the waterway behind the flood bank and bird hides. There were a lot of barn swallows and a lot of sedge warblers and reed warblers.

The RSPB members’ book suggests there are some 13 different warbler species seen on the site, so when I saw this beautiful creature I leapt to the assumption that it was some kind of warbler…as ever it took my virtual ornithological mentor to correct my misconception – yellow wagtail (Motacilla flava). It’s a juvenile though hence the muted colours.

I must add though that I’d seen on on a post on the washes side of the flood bank close to some lapwings and had thought it looked like a wagtail. But, it was a long way off and on a hot and hazy day no zoom lens is going to correct for refractive abberations due to turbulent hot air rising.

Anyway, yellow wagtail it is, another one for the gallery.

Author: bob投注平台

Award-winning freelance science writer, author of Deceived Wisdom. Sharp-shooting photographer and wannabe rockstar.