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8th April 2021 – Stoke Park Estate, Bristol

I have been rather frustrated over the last few days as I have seen reports of sightings of a common redstart on my local patch but knew I didn’t have the opportunity to go and try to spot it.

This afternoon, with dwindling light (and a cold northerly wind) I found an hour to go searching. On turning up at the acknowledged spot I met other photographers who had seen it in the morning (with their proud photos). But nothing to see. I hung around in the cold without any success. Another birder claimed to see it across the pond, but all I found in my lens was a robin.

Raised hopes but only a robin

It started to rain so I set off home on two occasions but kept coming back. And then – voilà – my redstart appeared on the barbed wire. I fired a few shots and then it flew off only a few seconds after it arrived, never to be seen again.

Male common redstart
I’m sure it had spotted me
Right profile
Left profile
Canada goose flying in the rain
Lots of ducklings around the pond
The robin came back to show off

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