Ironically the last day of our holiday had by far the best weather. It was really quite hot from an early hour. Perfect sunbathing ! This time Claire could sit by the pool in comfort at last !
I must admit we were impressed with the location and amenities at the Myalanthi especially at the price. Would I go back ? Probably !
It wasn't on my mind then though, I decided to do a quick visit to all my local haunts for one last look.
The Rupell's first
Then back to the Shrike site. The Bushchat's were there but not showing close by but instead, and to my delight, there appeared to be several Red-backed Shrikes about. I presume they must have arrived during the night because I hadn't seen that many before, certainly not that close either. I didn't have the time to wait patiently so I attempted to walk nearer the bird but no sooner had I got reasonably close they usually flew or dropped deep in to the bush.
Without a tripod, hand holding the 500mm lens, especially when using a 2.0xTC isn't going to give the sharpest image but satisfied with this one I moved on.
A quick stop by the reservoir rewarded me with a flyover Ruddy Shellduck
Then I head off for one last look at the north coast track, seen here in the distance.
I wanted one last chance to capture a Cretzschmar's Bunting in good light.
I was definitely running short of time now so instead of waiting I found myself scrambling up the hillside.The Bunting had obliged nicely.
With midday approaching we set off back towards the airport allowing just a quick final peep at the Salt Pans. One last treat, a Whiskered Tern and first European sighting for me, was flying over the top corner. I still had the 2.0x TC attached and blew the opportunity of some superb shots having to make do with this one. Not a bad way to end the holiday, well, for me at least.
The last day continued with hot sun all day, and indeed the following day forecast more of the same. I guess that's the chance you take at this time of year.
From all accounts it wasn't the best year. Certainly from a wader/water bird point of view it was much lacking. Tales of the skies blackened by huge fly over flocks, massive numbers falling all at once, a bird in every bush didn't materialise but that said it was pretty damn good.
Would we go again ?
I think I would wait until the last minute once again and check the weather forecast, maybe wait until later in the month. It might mean missing the peak migration but there would still be plenty about.
Hope the Blog has proved useful for anyone contemplating a visit.