A Spotted Flycatcher singing (in so much as they do sing) from trees behind the garden this morning.
I only caught a glimpse of it, but it obliged my bleary vision by doing what flycatchers do best – performing a little fluttering sortie from its branch and arriving back at exactly the same favoured spot.
This is the first I’ve ever seen from our garden, and the first I’ve seen anywhere since 2006. Aside from their current scarcity, they’re such unobtrusive birds that I tend to think of them as magical.
I’d been a keen young bird obsessive for several years before I realised that there were Spotted Flycatchers in the garden at home in Kent. Ever since, I’ve held them in particular esteem.
At least one pair certainly summered in Firle village three years ago. Hopefully this morning’s bird isn’t just passing through.
[Image of a Spotted Flycatcher taken at Lowestoft, Suffolk, in 2004 by Andrew Easton]