A probable American Golden Plover was reported today at Middleton RSPB. It couldn't have picked a better day to arrive, scorching sun and high temperatures. Just the conditions you want to trek all your kit down to the Jubilee Wetlands. I had vowed I wasn't venturing out today as it's just too hot for comfort, I succumbed to the temptation in about 20 seconds and was on my way.
On arrival a large group of birders were discussing such things as leg length, primary projections, and visible gold dappling. Consensus of opinion was swinging towards Pacific Golden Plover. My own initial first impression was, it had some legs on it!
Bright sunshine and intense heat haze made me question if i should even attempt to get a picture on my phone through the scope. What the hell, I'd give it a go. As this is a first for Staffordshire and the West Midlands, I needed to make an effort to record it.
My camera struggled to even focus due to the heat haze. So, it was back to the phone and scope to see if I could record something. I was hoping at best for a smudge that resembled a Pacific Golden Plover if you squinted while looking at it. Here are a few of my best smudges. iPhone 5 through scope.
Obviously, a bird of this status was going to attract some attention. Middleton RSPB car park was full as I left, and more were arriving all the time. I hope everyone that made the effort got the tick.
And finally, well done to G.Williams for finding it