24th September. The Week Before Shetland

The week before my Shetland trip came up with the goods once again with a cracking adult Sandhill Crane at Loch of Strathbeg, Aberdeenshire. With the last bird, on Orkney foiling my plans by departing, this was a welcome pull back.

Back on the patch things have been very quiet with no waders since last weekends Ruff. A couple of fugitive Ruddy Ducks paid a brief visit last week, a valuable patch tick of this now scarce duck.

21st September. Intrepid?

Apparently I'm intrepid! Not my words or the words of anyone that knows me but the words of LGRE who in his latest 'Scillies is rubbish these days' posting said "A few intrepids prefer the tranquility of Shetland or the Outer Hebrides in their quest for that dreamt-of find". Actually the reason that I go is because I hate the sight of hundreds of birders swarming over everything from Black Redstart* upwards. So with the swelling numbers of ex Scilly birders heading North next month Andy AKA The Leicester Llama and I have moved camp to the far north i.e. Unst. It's an experiment that might go hideously wrong - it might be a birding triumph. Whatever it is one thing is certain we won't have the crowds like last year - at one point there were at least eight of us watching the Issy Shrike ridiculous!

Bizarrely LGRE's comments have come following the biggest deluge of American birds to hit the archipelago this century!!

Being intrepid in 2007!